Part-3: UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY

UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam

ITALY

UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC ExamThe idea of Italy as an entity, of Italian as a noble and beautiful language and of the  common cultural roots of the Italian city and states, however, can be traced back to the Renaissance period and even earlier. Francisco Petrarch (1304- 1374) turned to antiquity for inspiration and solace following the decline of the two great forces of universalism – the Holy Roman Empire and the Papacy. It was a purely literary patriotism. Rienzo’s “proclamations of the sovereignty of the Roman people and of the unity of Italy”, and his support for the common people against the aristocracy, also contained weak anticipations of ideas of nationalism and democracy.

The campaign for a unified literacy vernacular started in Italy when it became the victim of invading armies. But the debate on language reflected the social divisions in Italy and not merely regional differences. The insistence on the linguistic cleavage between the ruling class and the common people and the assumption that Italy could have one language only for the dominant social groups reflected a profoundly elitist attitude.

In Italy poets played a major role in the development of nationalism. It was humanistic literary elite which played a role in the diffusion of the Italian language. There was no powerful state as in France which could promote the national language. The absence of a vernacular reformation as in Germany confined the Italian language to tiny elite of 2.5% who commonly used  the  Italian  language  even  in 1860.



In fact the great contributions of Italian humanism also reflected a bias in favour of the elite. The great Italian humanists “spoke for and to the dominant social groups”. The literary output of the humanists was rooted in a sense of the responsibilities of the upper classes. Even the Renaissance ideal of the dignity of man was linked to the domineering position of urban ruling groups in an age of triumph. Italian nationalism of the 19th century failed to overcome the cultural elitism of the Italian humanists and literary masters.

 

Political and Economic  Background

During the first half of the 16th century, Italy faced an intermittent conflict between French, Swiss, Spanish and German soldiers for political supremacy on Italian states – Venice, Milan, Florence, Naples and the Papal states – produced by, mid-15th century – was upset by the Italian wars of 1494-1559. While France and Spain began to move towards a sense of nationalism, the Italians had a strong sense of regional  or local attachment to Milan, Florence or  Genoa;  but they could also swing to the other extreme    to  become cosmopolitans.

It was the French Revolution which provided a model for Italian nationalism. The French occupying forces in Lombardy organized an essay competition on the subject of the best  form  of free government for Italy. This encouraged a debate extolling the ancient glories of Italy, admiration for France and its constitution of 1795 and schemes for Italian regeneration and unification. Melchiorre Gioia won the essay competition and become one of Italy’s leading economists.

The Kingdom of Italy created by Napoleon helped to foster Italian national sentiment but it also reduced it to a continental colony of France. The Napoleonic legal codes and prefectural system which was introduced in Italy helped to define the model of a unified national state. Even the Italian army, based on conscription and used for Napoleon’s campaigns, revealed a sense of nationalism. It was as a reaction to French domination and Napoleon’s identification with Imperial Rome that Italian writers choose to reject the  Roman  heritage.

The Austrians were the dominant power in Italy and the settlement after the defeat of Napoleon strengthened Austrian control. Metternich’s proposal for an Italian Confederation, on the lines of the German Confederation, was opposed by both Piedmont and the Pope’s advisers. In the period after 1815 the secret societies attracted the supporters  of  the Italian Jacobin tradition. Members of the Carbonari and other secret societies were not exclusively  concerned  with  Italian  nationalism.

e.g. Carbonari of southern Italy who enjoyed the greatest public support among the 19th century revolutionary organizations were more interested in  democratizing  Naples  than  in  unifying Italy.



After the failure of the revolutions of 1830-   31, specially in Modena and Bologna,  Italians felt increasingly the need to rely on their own endeavour and on open methods of agitation. Giuseppe Mazzini, started Young Italy and rejected  the  sectarian  model  of  revolutionary dictatorship and terror. Mazzini was a democratic nationalist who simultaneously rejected both the elitism of  the  moderates  and the  Jacobin  ideal  of  revolutionary dictatorship.

Radicals in Italy saw the monarchial governments as obstacles to the politics of integration; to them, their overthrow was the precondition for a unified nation-state. Radical nationalism in Italy found its greatest exponent   in Guiseppe Mazzini (1805-1872) who had earlier joined a branch of the Carbonari in 1827  but soon became disillusioned by their lack of clear purpose. He felt that Italy’s freedom from Austrian domination depended entirely on the destruction of aristocratic privilege and clerical authority. With this objective he founded the Young Italy (Giovine Italia) in 1832 and envisioned a republican form of government for   a united Italian state. After a failed armed uprising at Savoy in 1834 Mazzini went into exile  in London.

As a radical Unitarian, Mazzini believed that all forms of federalism were mere mechanisms  for perpetuating the dominance of local elites. Mazzini’s nationalism was not exclusive and he believed in the eventual emergence of a United States of Europe after all nations had become  free. Although he believed in a people’s war of national liberation he also believed in a democratic government based on universal suffrage. Mazzini recognized the importance of support from the peasantry for his conception of people’s war but Italian republicans were never able to bridge the gap between the towns and    the  countryside.

The Italian national movement was not based on such a strong industrial bourgeoisie as in the case of Germany. The level of economic unification in Italy prior to political unification was also on a lesser scale than in Germany, the Italian customs union being no match for the German Zollverein. Another serious economic problem was the considerable backwardness of the  Italian south.

The process of national unification in Italy was based on the existence of several states which tried to preserve their autonomy and privileges  in the context of Franco-Austrian rivalry. Piedmont became the Italian state which unified Italy. The king, Charles Albert until 1840, evinced no  sentiments  in  favour  of  either  liberalism or patriotism. Charles Albert (1831-1840) was a conservative monarch who had no compunctious about using Austrian troops  to  stop  revolution in Italy much like the Metternich system envisaged.

Although Piedmont was not quite the powerhouse like Prussia in an economic sense, it was politically and militarily the most active participant in the process of Italian revolution. Cavour, Mazzini and Garibaldi have been hailed in some accounts as the brain, heart and sword    of unification. While Piedmont’s policies had been timid before 1849, in the 1850s the more resolute policies of Count Cavour in  combination  with the popular movements launched by Mazzini and Garibaldi led to Italian unification with the popular movements launched by Mazzini and Garibaldi led to Italian unification. Cavour used his friendship and alliance with Napoleon III to wage successful wars for both the liberation of Italy from Austria and political unification. The territorial ambitions of Piedmont-Sardinia and  the desire to preserve social stability shaped the attitude of the aristocratic Cavour. Unification was to depend primarily on the  regular  army and  bureaucracy,  not  popular  movements.

The financial costs of the wars of liberation had to be borne by Piedmont Sardinia which adversely affected the programme of modernization started by Cavour in the 1850s. Piedmont influence which Piedmont wielded in the unitary state which was created in 1861. Earlier, when Pope Pius IX  withdrew  support  for a national war against Catholic Austria in April 1848 he lost the support of nationalist opinion  in Italy.

After the revolution in Rome and the flight  of the Pope, the Roman Republic was proclaimed. The efforts of the Pope to return succeeded in June 1849 with the help of French and Austrian forces. During the period of Italian unification, the Pope and the Catholic Church played a conservative role. After losing temporal power, the Pope forbade the faithful to participate in national politics. The opposition of the Church to the secular state – as well as socialism,  anarchism  and  the  labour movement

– culminated in the merger of anticlericalism with support  for  parliamentary  democracy.

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UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam

UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam

UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam

UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam
UINIFICATION OF ITLAY AND GERMANY, World History Notes, Notes for IAS examination, Hindi Notes for IAS Examination, World History Notes for UPSC Exam