Messitte publishes opinion piece on Italy’s fascist past

An opinion piece by President Zach Messitte was published Monday, April 29, in The Washington Post.

In “As nationalism surges, Italy must reckon with its fascist past: Italians celebrate their resistance to fascism, but have yet to fully understand their support for it,” Messitte writes: “As nationalism resurges around the world, and in Italy, Il Duce’s ignominious end and Italians’ understanding of their country’s role in World War II have gained renewed importance. Since 1945, Italians have grappled with how to remember their nation’s role in the war and, in particular, how to include the millions of their fellow countrymen who supported Mussolini in their commemoration of the era.

“These questions of historical memory and political legitimacy are increasingly important because societies with authoritarian-leaning leaders could soon be called upon again to choose whether to act in honorable duty to their nation or in righteous defiance against an unjust government.”

Messitte outlines the history of the country’s division between fascist and anti-fascist supporters and concludes, “While Italy rightly celebrates those who stood against fascism during the war, it must also do the hard work of understanding the hundreds of thousands of Italians who did not, lest the cult of Mussolini return to the nation.”

Messitte is on sabbatical during the spring semester and is living in Italy to research a book about Americans playing basketball in the Italian professional league.


Related Posts

Paul Dietrich

Paul Dietrich releases fourth album of music, supports it with a tour

Paul Dietrich, adjunct instructor of music, released his fourth album as a leader, “5+4,” in October and supported it with a small tour in February. […]

Adjunct Instructor of Music Christopher Cramer playing guitar

Classical guitar recital to be presented Feb. 23 at Ripon College

A classical guitar recital with Dr. Christopher Cramer, adjunct professor of music, will be presented Friday, Feb. 23, at Ripon College. The recital will begin […]

Tobin Shucha

Tobin Shucha directs honors band for select students from nine schools

Tobin Shucha, assistant professor of music and director of bands and music education, was the invited conductor for the Flyway Conference Honors Band Jan. 31 […]

William R. Stott Jr.

William R. Stott Jr., Ripon’s 10th president, has died at the age of 88

William R. Stott Jr., Ripon College’s 10th president, died Feb. 1 at the age of 88. He served at Ripon College from 1985-1995. He was […]

President Zach Messitte

 


Related Areas of Study