"Her and Yet Not Her": Women Authors Questioning Mussolini's Fascist Regime on the 'Terza Pagina' of Italy's Newspapers 1925-1936

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"Her and Yet Not Her": Women Authors Questioning Mussolini's Fascist Regime on the 'Terza Pagina' of Italy's Newspapers 1925-1936

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Title: "Her and Yet Not Her": Women Authors Questioning Mussolini's Fascist Regime on the 'Terza Pagina' of Italy's Newspapers 1925-1936
Author: Yarkin, Genna
Advisor: Kitroeff, Alexander
Department: Haverford College. Dept. of History
Type: Thesis (B.A.)
Issue Date: 2011
Abstract: My thesis examines the ways in which Italian female authors questioned the policies and ideologies of the fascist regime, led by Benito Mussolini. With the support of eight short stories written by authors Grazia Deledda, Ada Negri, Amalia Guglielminetti, Pia Rimini, Maria Luisa Astaldi and Marinella Lodi, my thesis draws connections between regime policy and the attitudes and actions of female citizens in Italy. Because women's short stories were some of the most visible and widely distributed forms of women's self-representation during the regime, they give us valuable insight into the criticisms and questions women had concerning its treatment of women, their bodies, and their destinies. The stories examined in my thesis originally appeared between 1925 and 1936 on the third page, or 'terza pagina,' of two of Italy's most popular newspapers, the Corriere della sera of Turin and II Giornale d'Italia of Rome. While women's writing was successful in other mediums, such as novels or collections of stories and poems, they enjoyed the most popularity and daily readership on the cultural pages of these newspapers. Because the regime had 'Fascized' Italy's media by 1926, driving social and political criticism and commentary off the pages of newspapers, short stories began appearing almost daily on the first two columns on the third page. This provided a valuable and highly visible stage on which women gave voice to issues affecting them. Namely, in three separate sections, this thesis addresses women's responses to the regime's policies concerning the following issues: motherhood and marriage, the real and imagined needs of rural, peasant women, and the emphasis of a collective will and identity over that of the individual. Each of the themes is illustrated by short stories that delve into the lives of Italian women and how the policies and attitudes of the regime negatively affected them. Ultimately, our possession of and analysis on women's contributions to the 'terza pagina' of Italy's newspapers allows us to conclude that women did not meekly accept the role of the 'New Woman' that was forced upon them. Rather, they questioned and resisted the regime's laws, ideas, propaganda and policies. This resistance and criticism is vividly represented and brought to life by women's short stories, which, until recently, were forgotten by Italy and the world.
Subject: Fascism -- Italy -- History -- 20th century
Subject: Women authors, Italian -- 20th century
Subject: Mussolini, Benito, 1883-1945
Terms of Use: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/3.0/us/
Permanent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10066/6735

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Yarkin, Genna. ""Her and Yet Not Her": Women Authors Questioning Mussolini's Fascist Regime on the 'Terza Pagina' of Italy's Newspapers 1925-1936". 2011. Available electronically from http://hdl.handle.net/10066/6735.

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