By G. Lichtner
From neorealism's get to the bottom of to Berlusconian revisionist melodramas, this ebook examines cinema's position in developing thoughts of Fascist Italy. Italian cinema has either mirrored and formed well known perceptions of Fascism, reinforcing or not easy stereotypes, remembering selectively and silently forgetting the main shameful pages of Italy's historical past.
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Additional resources for Fascism in Italian Cinema since 1945: The Politics and Aesthetics of Memory
And, on that count at least, Negrin and Martinelli had much in common. Notwithstanding its outward tentativeness in espousing a neofascist narrative of ‘betrayed memory’,32 the ﬁlm suited its political sponsors: Maurizio Gasparri, AN lieutenant and Minister of Telecommunications (and thus in charge of RAI) in 2005, rose to the occasion, electing himself producer, critic and historian, and adopting a remarkable postmodernist approach in infusing the text with the required meanings. Trampling over protocol, which accords RAI at least the illusion of political autonomy, Gasparri issued invitations in his name to a RAI premiere of the ﬁlm,33 to be hosted in the same Roman venue where AN were celebrating their tenth anniversary with some pomp.
7 In Italy, where the cultural and memory discourses had been highly politicised well before Berlusconi or Fukuyama, the allegedly bipartisan call for an ‘apolitical’ revision of the country’s twentieth century would, rather, result in a settling of old scores, the revenge of right-wing intellectuals who had felt marginalised by the presumed cultural and moral supremacy of the left. Thus, Violante’s plea for introspection sought demystiﬁcation and reconciliation but achieved just the mix of cheap revisionism, slander and political apathy that Violante had wished to avoid, framed on one side by a resurgent right and on the other by a left gripped in an endless search for identity that often amounted to little more than selfﬂagellation, failing either to reclaim a noble past or to build a signiﬁcant present.
For postwar Italian governments, to address the foibe would have meant dealing with the reasons for the presence of Italian civilians and military personnel in Yugoslavia in the ﬁrst place. It would have become necessary to acknowledge Italian expansionism in the area, the rhetoric of disdain for the ‘barbarous’ Slavs, Fascist ethnic policies in the North-East of Italy and in occupied territories, and the brutality of Italian troops, especially in anti-partisan warfare. The Blood of the Defeated 31 These are exactly the elements that are lost in Negrin’s tear-jerking melodrama, which follows the young son of a middle-class Italian family on the Istrian coast.