ENIGMAS OF FASCISM
Was fascism a revolutionary or a counter-revolutionary phenomenon? This question has always been the central dividing-line in the literature about it. If fascism was revolutionary, then it belongs with communism as a variant of totalitarian politics, and offers yet another example of the disasters to which twentieth-century revolutions led—Hitler and Stalin as twin monsters of the age. If, on the other hand, fascism was counter-revolutionary, then its place in European history looks quite different. Rather than standing as a warning against the dangers of revolutionary ideology, its success in defeating socialism can be seen as laying the groundwork for the spread of liberal-democratic capitalism thereafter, with the disappearance of any radical threat to the bourgeois order in post-war Germany and Italy, or post-Franco Spain. Interpretations of fascism are thus intimately bound up with alternative readings of the history of the twentieth century as a whole.
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- Adam Tooze: Empires at War Adam Tooze on Michael Mann, The Sources of Social Power, Volume III: Global Empires and Revolution, 1890–1945. The world-spanning crises of the early 20th century seen through the lens of historical sociology.
- Anders Stephanson: Empire Edgemanship Anders Stephanson on Michael Mann, The Sources of Social Power, Volume IV: Globalizations, 1945–2011. Strengths and frailties of the climax to a unique macro-sociological enterprise, as it reaches the theoretical sands of the contemporary world.