The Fascist Influence of Gabriele D'Annunzio: Manipulation of the Press and Theatricality of Politics

TLDR Gabriele D'Annunzio, an influential Italian writer and political leader, played a significant role in shaping fascism through his manipulation of the press, emphasis on theatricality in politics, and elitist populist ideology. His fame as a writer and political figure may have been overshadowed by Mussolini, but his influence on fascism cannot be denied.

Timestamped Summary

00:00 Gabriele Danunzio, an Italian writer and political leader, was described by Mussolini as the John the Baptist of fascism due to his emphasis on the great man, love of modernity, worship of blood and sacrifice, and hatred of parliamentary democracy.
05:56 Gabriele Danunzio's fame as a writer and political figure has been overshadowed by Mussolini and the emergence of fascism, but his influence on fascism, including the manipulation of the press and the theatricality of politics, cannot be denied.
11:14 Gabriele D'Annunzio manipulated the press to gain fame as a young writer, and later became a hack writer and fashion copywriter, justifying it as a way to reach a wider audience, but he also had a monstrous ego and a disturbing obsession with women, boasting about forcing himself on working class women and raping peasant girls, although it is unclear if these claims were true or fantasies.
16:32 Gabriele D'Annunzio had a keen awareness of intellectual and political trends, often being ahead of his contemporaries, and believed in the superiority of certain individuals who should rule.
21:51 Gabriele D'Annunzio believed in an elitist populist ideology, had a fascination with virility and spectacle, and desired to ignite a great holocaust to inspire the people to rise up and become more aggressive and nationalist.
27:05 Gabriele D'Annunzio returns to Italy in 1915 and delivers repulsive speeches glorifying war and bloodshed, tapping into a sentiment shared by many at the time.
32:18 Italy enters World War I on the side of the Allies after secretly agreeing to a treaty with the French and British, and Gabriele D'Annunzio plays a crucial role in swaying public opinion and inciting violence to ensure the treaty is passed.
37:40 Gabriele D'Annunzio's daring and patriotic exploits as an aviator, including dropping pamphlets over Vienna, boosted Italian morale during World War I and set the stage for his famous occupation of Fiume.
42:43 Gabriele D'Annunzio leads a group to occupy Fiume, gaining support from Italian military members and volunteers from all over Europe.
47:49 Gabriele D'Annunzio establishes himself as the commandant of Fiume, leading his legion of ex-Arditi troops and adopting fascist rituals and symbols.
52:49 Gabriele D'Annunzio's time in Fiume ended in a very ugly way, with riots and racial divisions, and while he may not have publicly endorsed fascism, fascism was definitely influenced by him.
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