AUTHOR: Giuseppe Mazzini was an Italian politician and journalist and played a vital role in the eventual unification of Italy. In 1831, he traveled to Marseille and started a up a secret society, Young Italy, which promoted Italy’s unification. Mazzini pursued his thoughts regarding unification by creating similar groups to Young Italy, such as Young Germany, Young Poland and Young Switzerland. After Italy was successfully unified, he became a strong advocate of the European unification1 .
CONTEXT: This was published in 1852; two years after Mazzini had been hiding from the Swiss police. Leading up to 1852, Mazzini had been traveling around Europe promoting European unification as well as Italian unification. Revolutions had been prominent all around Europe, such as the French Revolution of 1848 and the October Revolution in Vienna in 18482 .
LANGUAGE: Mazzini wrote with a very confident tone, adamant about what was best for Italy. He states what must be done gives specific instructions to the readers regarding Italy’s nationality and unification. His tone is also very prominent when discussing the lack of nationality Europe’s counties have, and how he believes the nations should go about fixing this.
AUDIENCE: Mazzini is directing this piece towards everyone in Europe, specifically those who live in nations undergoing turmoil. He wished to persuade the people to unify their nations for the betterment of Europe as a whole.
INTENT: Mazzini’s intent in writing this was to evoke the people of Europe to make more of an effort to unify their nations. He was trying to show them how big of an issue it was that these nations and Europe itself was not unified.
MESSAGE: Mazzini’s message was to inform the people they would receive much more benefits by living in a unified nation and continent.
WHY? This was written in response to many of the revolutions Mazzini had noticed occur around Europe. He realized that multiple nations were struggling with unification and nationalism, and he encouraged them to find a way to become one.
Mazzini was able to see a commonality amongst all the countries of Europe. He argued that there were many social ideals in place, many of which were progressive and spearheaded by the French, but that these social ideals would never manifest without the “instruments for action” in place. These “instruments of action” were the reorganization of Europe under various nationalistic arrangements. He believed that the desired social changes could only be achieved if united, national states, replaced the “absolutist league which now reigns supreme.”