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Italy: The Rise of Fascism 1915-1945 > Past paper questions > Flashcards

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1

How far do you agree that the Catholic Church and the traditional elites aided Mussolini in his consolidation of power in the years 1922-29?

Traditionals:
Catholic Church - Lateran Treaties of 1929
King - obedient to Mussolini, allowed him to pass laws by personal decree
Army - Supported Mussolini's refusal to reduce the size of the armed forces and pursue a more aggressive foreign policy

Other factors:
- Failure of opposition
- Use of Blackshirts, Fascist Militia
- Censorship of media
- Cult of Personality
- People pleased by conquests in Foreign Policy and strong leadership - Corfu incident

2

To what extent was Italy politically and economically united in the years 1986-1914?

Not united politically:
- only 2 million men can vote until 1912
- North-South divide (South very reactionary)
- Middle class elites dominate parliament
- Liberal government consisted of transformismo coalitions, bargaining and corruption

Not united economically:
- North South divide
- Poverty of South
- Increase in industrialisation in North

3

How far was growth in the support for fascism in Italy in the years 1919-22 responsible for Mussolini's appointment as Prime Minister?

- Party membership increased to 300,000 by 1922
- Mussolini's threat to March on Rome
- Fascist violence
- Support of middle classes, industrialists, landowners
- Failure of opposition and weakness of Liberal Government
- Role of King Victor Emmanuel
- Support of key figures such as D'Annunzio

4

How far do you agree that Mussolini's foreign policy in the years 1933 to 1941 was a complete failure?

Failure:
- Cost of Somalian and attempt at Egyptian invasion
- Resources used in intervening in Spanish Civil War and maintaining Ethiopia
- Consequences of actions in Abyssinia causing League of Nations to impose sanctions
Success:
- National pride
- Support of nationalists and increases cult of personality
- Sanctions don't affect raw materials

5

How far does the North-South divide in Italy explain the weaknesses of the Liberal state in the years 1896-1914?

North-South divide means hard to strike balance in Parliament

Other reasons:
- Transformismo
- Middle class elite
- Only 2 million can vote until 1912
- Constant change of government
- Coalitions
- Refusal of parties to work together

6

To what extent did Mussolini's economic policies improve the standard of living of ordinary Italians in the years 1922-43?

- Battle for the Grain
- Wheat production doubled
- Almost self-sufficient
- Little change for workers
- Battle for the Lira
- Makes exports more expensive
- Battle for the Marshes
- Only 10,000 people actually resettled
- Battle for Births

7

To what extent does disappointment with the outcome of the First World War explain growing support for the Italian Fascist Party in the years 1919-22?

- 'Mutilated victory'
- National debt, unemployment, inflation, low living standards, returning soldiers, loss of pride
- Growing fear of socialism from Middle Classes
- Support of Catholic Church (family values, anti-Communist)
- Support of industrialists and land owners - striking workers attacked by Fascist squadristi

8

How successful was Mussolini in increasing the international prestige of Italy in the years 1922-43?

- Attends Locarno Treaty
- 'Mussolini made the trains run on time'
- Battle for the Marshes gives impression to journalists of change
- Stresa front, 1939

Damaging prestige:

9

To what extent had the pressing political problems of the 1890s in Italy been solved by 1914?

?

10

How accurate is it to say that the growing power of the Fascist Party in Italy in the years 1919-25 was mainly due to Mussolini's leadership?

- Mussolini intimidated by ras
- Squadristi violence
- Middle classes scared of Communism
- Promised aggressive foreign policy
- Seemed to offer strong leadership

11

To what extent was Italy's attempt to become a great power responsible for the political instability of the Liberal State in the years 1896-1922?

- Cost
- Humiliation of Adowa and other losses infuriates Nationalists, creates resentment
- Transformismo
- Corruption and bribery
- Coalitions
- Middle class elites
- North South divide

12

To what extent was Fascist control of Italy during the years 1925-43 the result of the effective use of propaganda?

- Propaganda (cinema newsreel, tv, radio)
- Cult of Personality
- Fascist violence and intimidation
- Little opposition
- Support of King, Church and Armed Forces
- Support of middle classes
- Successes in foreign policy
- Strong leadership

13

How successful were Giolitti's governments in promoting political stability in Italy in the years 1903 to 1914?

?

14

How far do you agree that the consolidation of Fascist power in Italy in the years 1922-29 was mainly due to the use of force and intimidation?

?

15

How far do you agree that the rise of the Fascist Party in the years 1919-22 was the most important reason for the collapse of the Liberal State?

- Mutilated victory
- 1912 universal male suffrage

16

How accurate is it to say that Mussolini's foreign policy increased his popularity in the years 1922-41?

- National pride
- Support of Nationalists
- Decreased living standards due to amount spent on armed forces
- Apparent economic stability