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Since the early nineteenth century political opposition became a central concept of political representation in constitutional monarchies. While this concept marked the political language of unified Italy on the national level, in local administration the legitimacy of political opposition remained an issue of dispute, as illustrated in this analysis of the political language in Bologna's local council. Local perceptions of national events, like the government's reaction to Garibaldi's unsuccessful Mentana-campaign, assumed major symbolic meaning in local politics and challenged traditional understandings of municipal administration by introducing the concept of political opposition. In Bologna, after Rome the second city of the former Papal State, the Moderates were able to grow into a position of political hegemony after the Unification of Italy and remained the predominant political force also after Italy's “parliamentary revolution” of 1876 and the electoral reforms of the 1880s. As a consequence of its limited influence on the local administration, Bologna's Left defined its ideological profile earlier and more clearly than the Left in other parts of Italy and integrated issues of national importance into local political discourse. Analysing the relationship between central administration and periphery, the article reveals the development of political language and the changing meanings of political representation between Unification and World War One and explains on this basis the escalation of social and political conflict in Finesecolo Italy.
One of the circumstances likely to be associated with the intensity of both investigative and legislative efforts designed to curb political and bureaucratic corruption is institutional reform. Since the characteristics of electoral and party systems seem to be associated with variations in the intensity of anti-corruption efforts cross-nationally, it was reasonable to think that changes in the characteristics of these systems in Italy in the 1990s would be reflected in a corresponding change in the efforts of legislators and members of the judiciary to tackle corruption. Prior to the 1990s Italy's tripolar party system and its numerous concomitants placed considerable obstacles in the way of the willingness and the ability of judicial investigators and parliamentarians to deal with the corruption emergency. The 1993 electoral law reform, the eventual emergence of a largely bipolar party system and the circumstances surrounding these processes considerably diminished the significance of the aforementioned obstacles, yet there has been little noticeable increase in anti-corruption efforts. This is probably explicable in terms of the electoral effects of such efforts and suggests that institutional change is at most only one of a number of conditions that must be fulfilled in order for more strenuous efforts to be observed.
This article explores the reasons why Turin's Fascists launched a violent offensive against the local labour movement two months after the Fascist seizure of power. The article demonstrates that the residual resistance of the working class to Fascism was the major reason behind the Turin massacre. However, it also investigates other decisive factors for the violence of December 1922: the conflict between the national Fascist leadership and Turin Fascism and within the Turin fascio itself. The article challenges the interpretation, best exemplified by Renzo De Felice, that the Fascist violence was spontaneous, carried out by undisciplined squadristi without the approval of Mussolini and the Fascist leadership. Rather, it argues that there existed significant levels of planning and a high degree of toleration by the Turinese and national Fascist leaderships and the local authorities. Using Turin as a case study, the article provides a clearer view of the tensions existing within the Fascist movement in the months after the seizure of power. It analyses how Turin Fascism was riddled by factional disputes and how its attempts to gain control of the major political and economic institutions of the city were frustrated by the opposition of the local authorities and industrialists, backed by Mussolini's government. The events of the months preceding and following the strage also afford insights into the conflicts within Fascism over the future role squadrism and violence was to play in the Fascist movement now Mussolini was head of government.
Since the early nineteenth century political opposition became a central concept of political representation in constitutional monarchies. While this concept marked the political language of unified Italy on the national level, in local administration the legitimacy of political opposition remained an issue of dispute, as illustrated in this analysis of the political language in Bologna's city council. Local perceptions of national events, like Garibaldi's unsuccessful Mentana-campaign, assumed a significant symbolic meaning and challenged traditional understandings of local administration by introducing notions of political opposition. In Bologna, the second city of the former Papal State, the Moderates were able to form a political hegemony after the Unification of Italy and remained the predominant political force also after the parliamentary revolution of 1876 and the electoral reforms of the 1880s. Due to its limited influence on the local administration, Bologna's Left defined its ideological profile earlier and more clearly than the Left in other parts of Italy and integrated issues of national importance into local political discourse. Illustrating the relationship between central administration and the periphery, the article analyses the development of political language and changing meanings of political representation on the local level between Unification and World War One.