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Istituto per i Beni Culturali Emilia-Romagna

Memoria e Ricerca

Case d’Italia in France: organization, activities and representation of fascism abroad

di Caroline Pane
in Memoria e Ricerca n.s. 41 (2012), p. 161

This article questions the definition of a fascist organization settled abroad: the Casa d’Italia – House of Italy –, analyzing its institutional and constitutional development. The author reviews the political affair which brought to the creation in the ’20s of the fasci all’estero – Fascist abroad – and to the elaboration of the “Case d’Italia” in the ’30s. She focuses on the creation of the “Direzione degli italiani all’estero” – Directions of Italians abroad – at Foreign ministry, that institutionalized and gave definition and centralization to the “Case d’Italia”. In France (country of the analysis), more than fifty “Case d’Italia” were built from 1928 to 1938. But most of them were not achieved in terms of organisation, services and structures. The most complete ones are located along the Italian border and in the areas of Italian high emigration. The Casa d’Italia was not only a place where Italian expatriates could looking for assistance, but it also became the symbol of Fascist Italy abroad and reached a new dimension that transformed it into a “temple” of fascist ideology through decorations, architectures, symbols and festivities. Key words: Fascism, Foreign policy, Propaganda, Representation, Emigration, France