Christopher Duggan's new history of fascist Italy explores how the movement became embodied in the person of Benito Mussolini who occupied for many an almost divine status and gave millions of men and women a sense of pride and hope, offering the prospect of national regeneration after decades of disappointment.
A work of exceptional authority and originality, Fascist Voices makes use of rarely examined sources - letters and private diaries, newspaper reports and secret police files - to uncover how ordinary people experienced fascism on a daily basis and how its ideology influenced their beliefs, values, language and lifestyle.
Tracing fascism from its conception to its legacy, Christopher Duggan unpicks why the regime enjoyed so much support among the majority of the Italian population. He examines the extraordinary personal relationships that millions of Italians had with Mussolini, explores the religious dimensions of totalitarianism, and discusses why the 'cult of the Duce' still resonates in contemporary Italy.
Fascist Voices is a fresh and disturbing look at a country in thrall to a charismatic dictator.