What is Fascism?

1) Political: Highly efficient but unilateral. Mussolini’s Fascism highly contrasts common democracy because it dismisses the ethical philosophy that the majority is always right due to it being the most beneficial for the greater good. Although decisions that are non-consensual to demographic representation are often interpreted as inherently chaotic, this type of government can accomplish its political agendas more efficiently due to less required processes.

2) Economic: The opposite of Marxian Socialism. The economic ideology of Mussolini’s original fascism revolves around the individuals motives for “heroism” rather than materialism. Therefore, workers who embrace this principle will discard their desire of upward class mobility and replace it with the intent to work for the power of the State, as “Fascism believes in…actions influenced by no economic motive.” This can potentially serve as a powerful incentive for production due to laborers impression that greatness is achieved through effort rather than status.

3) Military: Expansionist. Mussolini believed what marked a powerful nation was its momentum, and there was no better way to achieve this than through expansion and imperial prowess.

How did Fascism manifest itself given the cultural and political history of Italy? Would Fascism have arisen had Italy played a larger military role in World War I?

It is easy to understand why American’s view of Fascism is dark. “The pursuit of happiness” is an American phrase that is embedded in our Declaration of Independence, while fascism regards happiness as a “myth.”

3 thoughts on “What is Fascism?

  1. Italian fascism sought to combine strong nationalism with modern development and was aggressive in support of its anti-materialism ideals. Fascism originally embraced national liberation and rejected racism. Though political parties were split over the ideology and even hostile to Hitler, Hitler sought Mussolini as his chief ally.

  2. I see political similarities between the “Decline of the West” and “What is Fascism” in their perception on the decline of democracy in the near future after their pieces were written. Just as Spengler states that the “Caesars” will come to rule, Mussolini believes that the upcoming era after WWI will bring up a “century of authority.” Both accept a world where democracy is on the decline, and see the upcoming generations ruled by authoritarian regimes denying that “numbers alone can numbers alone can govern by means of periodical consultation.”

  3. It is very easy for us as Americans to view fascism as negative. Most of us were raised to believe that happiness can be obtained by anyone who puts in the effort and hard work. We strive to do our best in school so that we can get a job that makes us happy. The phrase “if you love what you do you never work a day in your life” is about finding what makes us most happy in life. It is a core value in our culture and to take away happiness is to take away our freedom in a sense.

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