Catalogue


Italian Communism in transition [electronic resource] : the rise and fall of the historic compromise in Turin, 1975-1980 /
Stephen Hellman.
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, 1988.
description
x, 274 p. : ill.
ISBN
0195053354 (Cloth)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
New York : Oxford University Press, 1988.
isbn
0195053354 (Cloth)
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
general note
Title from e-book title screen (viewed October 15, 2007).
catalogue key
7372115
 
Bibliography: p. 257-266.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 1989-02:
A conceptually rich, analytically acute case study of the Italian Communist party (PCI) at Turin, the citadel of the Italian left, with important implications for Italy and Western Europe. Although the PCI's decline may not be so precipitous as the fates that befell its counterparts in France and Spain, the author leaves little doubt that the general trend is the same. Crises of transition challenge ideological doctrine, as well as the organizational forms, the strategies and the behavior of left-wing parties. They inevitably create not just internal tensions but also full-blown crises of identity. In the PCI's case, this has involved an aging membership, a sharp decline in appeal to the younger voters, a radically changed relationship to the trade unions, and almost no internal preparation to face the disappearance of the industrial working class and the emergence of the "new pluralism" of recent decades. The Italian Communists spent so much time trying to establish their "legitimacy," they wound up with nothing to say--as a party of opposition or, potentially, of government. Ironically, they left the Italian socialists an open field, into which Bettino Craxi has guided the latter with unerring instinct. The author neatly documents the causes of this decline. Highly recommended for undergraduates and graduates, as well as specialists, in history and the social sciences. -J. LaPalombara, Yale University
Reviews
Review Quotes
"A conceptually rich, analytically acute case study of the Italian Communist party (PCI) at Turin...with important implications for Italy and Western Europe....Highly recommended for undergraduates and graduates, as well as specialists, in history and the social sciences."--Choice
"A conceptually rich, analytically acute case study of the ItalianCommunist party (PCI) at Turin...with important implications for Italy andWestern Europe....Highly recommended for undergraduates and graduates, as wellas specialists, in history and the social sciences."--Choice
"A fascinating study."--International Affairs
"A splendid book, which should become required reading for anyone interested in Italian politics, European Communism, and European political parties generally. Its broad context gives the book a paradoxical and dramatic flavor that transcends the limits of the usual scholarly monograph. Itmanages also to be the single most illuminating study to date of the general crisis confronting the Italian Communist Party--and other European Communist parties--in the past decade."--Donald L.M. Blackmer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
"A splendid book, which should become required reading for anyoneinterested in Italian politics, European Communism, and European politicalparties generally. Its broad context gives the book a paradoxical and dramaticflavor that transcends the limits of the usual scholarly monograph. It managesalso to be the single most illuminating study to date of the general crisisconfronting the Italian Communist Party--and other European Communistparties--in the past decade."--Donald L.M. Blackmer, Massachusetts Institute ofTechnology
"Hellmann's study is a model of carefully crafted scholarship that draws on an extensive and intensive familiarity with the object of study, the Communist party in Turin."--American Historical Review
"Hellmann's study is a model of carefully crafted scholarship that drawson an extensive and intensive familiarity with the object of study, theCommunist party in Turin."--American Historical Review
"Helmann's intensive fieldwork provides an unusually penetrating glimpse of a political party in crisis."--Problems of Communism
"Helmann's intensive fieldwork provides an unusually penetrating glimpseof a political party in crisis."--Problems of Communism
"The research is solid and thorough; the knowledge of the subject outstanding; the final product excellent."--Gianfranco Pasquino, The Johns Hopkins University Bologna Center
"The research is solid and thorough; the knowledge of the subjectoutstanding; the final product excellent."--Gianfranco Pasquino, The JohnsHopkins University Bologna Center
"This excellent work provides us with incomparable insights into the PCI's organization and its more general problems."--Canadian Journal of Political Science
"This excellent work provides us with incomparable insights into the PCI'sorganization and its more general problems."--Canadian Journal of PoliticalScience
"A conceptually rich, analytically acute case study of the Italian Communist party (PCI) at Turin...with important implications for Italy and Western Europe....Highly recommended for undergraduates and graduates, as well as specialists, in history and the social sciences."--Choice"A splendid book, which should become required reading for anyone interested in Italian politics, European Communism, and European political parties generally. Its broad context gives the book a paradoxical and dramatic flavor that transcends the limits of the usual scholarly monograph. It manages also to be the single most illuminating study to date of the general crisis confronting the Italian Communist Party--and other European Communist parties--in thepast decade."--Donald L.M. Blackmer, Massachusetts Institute of Technology"A fascinating study."--International Affairs"The research is solid and thorough; the knowledge of the subject outstanding; the final product excellent."--Gianfranco Pasquino, The Johns Hopkins University Bologna Center"Helmann's intensive fieldwork provides an unusually penetrating glimpse of a political party in crisis."--Problems of Communism"Hellmann's study is a model of carefully crafted scholarship that draws on an extensive and intensive familiarity with the object of study, the Communist party in Turin."--American Historical Review"This excellent work provides us with incomparable insights into the PCI's organization and its more general problems."--Canadian Journal of Political Science
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, February 1989
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Summaries
Long Description
In the mid-1970s, the Italian Communist Party (PCI) almost succeeded in entering the national government; however, by the end of the decade its popularity had dramatically declined. Providing a first-hand view of the turbulent period from 1975 to 1980, this book explains the roots of the party's crisis. First looking at local conditions, the author studies a number of major developments in the city of Turin, from Red Brigade terrorism to the historic defeat of the unions at Fiat in 1980, and then sets these local events within the broader national strategy. Hellman, who has been studying the PCI since the late 1960s, systematically interviewed the entire full-time leadership of the Turinese Federation of the party, and attended regular meetings and activities from the grass roots to the summit of local organization. An unprecedented eyewitness account, Italian Communism in Transition is a complete history of the PCI's response to the crises and challenges of the 1970s.
Long Description
This is a study of the Italian Communist Party (PCI) during the most critical period of its recent history. In the mid-1970s, the PCI almost succeeded in entering the national government; by the end of that decade, it had been relegated to the opposition and went into a decline that continues today. This book provides a first-hand view of that turbulent period and explains the roots of the party's crisis.Hellman focuses on Turin, which has always been on the cutting edge of developments in Italy and in the Italian workers' movement. This is a study of local conditions that keeps the broader picture in focus by tracing local events in light of national developments. During this period, Turin, then governed by the Communists, was the site of great political activity and turbulence, from Red Brigade terrorism to the historic defeat of the unions at Fiat in 1980. The author provides aneye-witness analysis of the party's reaction to these challenges in light of its broader national strategy.
Main Description
In the mid-1970s, the Italian Communist Party (PCI) almost succeeded in entering the national government; however, by the end of the decade its popularity had dramatically declined. Providing a first-hand view of the turbulent period from 1975 to 1980, this book explains the roots of theparty's crisis. First looking at local conditions, the author studies a number of major developments in the city of Turin, from Red Brigade terrorism to the historic defeat of the unions at Fiat in 1980, and then sets these local events within the broader national strategy. Hellman, who has beenstudying the PCI since the late 1960s, systematically interviewed the entire full-time leadership of the Turinese Federation of the party, and attended regular meetings and activities from the grass roots to the summit of local organization. An unprecedented eyewitness account, Italian Communism inTransition is a complete history of the PCI's response to the crises and challenges of the 1970s.

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