Explain why Mussolini was appointed as Prime Minister in October 1922. • Liberal Italy had failed to win over the Italian nation – post-war debt of 85 million Lire, the Mutilated Settlement, failure to deal with Fiume and 5 different Prime Ministers since 1917 – people turned to extremists as an alternative, such as the Fascists
• fear of communism by the Middle and Upper Classes in Italy after the Bienno Rosso and increasing left-wing action – Mussolini was anti-communist and his squadre had acted against the socialists.
the PNF had won 35 seats in the previous election after being invited to form part of the governing coalition by Giolitti – seemed a viable political party and Mussolini was given -------------------------------------------------
credibility as a national politician.
How important was the Cult of II Duce in winning support for Fascism in Italy? * .Mussolini’s own actions made him popular by demonstrating he was a man of many talents – pictured studying literature or art as well as displaying his prowess as a racing driver, fencer and swimmer; he was even filmed wrestling lion cubs. Two activities were particularly popular in Italy in the 1930s, so Mussolini was shown skiing expertly as well as gaining his pilots licence in 1939
• the Cult of Il Duce was a key part of Fascist Ideology which believed in a return to the glory of ancient Rome with Mussolini as a modern day Caesar and Militarism which required discipline and subordination to the leader of the armed forces – this appealed to Italians who had become disillusioned with democracy/Liberal Italy.
• Fascist ideology appealed to a range of people – corporatism offered a ‘Third Way’ between the exploitation of capitalism and the lack of incentives within socialism, anticommunism appealed to the middle and upper classes who had seen a rise of socialism before Mussolini’s appointment as PM, militarism/expansionism promised to...