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Historical Roots of Political Extremism: The Effects of Nazi Occupation of Italy

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  • Nicola Fontana
  • Tommaso Nannicini
  • Guido Tabellini

Abstract

The Italian civil war and the Nazi occupation of Italy occurred at a critical juncture, just before the birth of a new democracy. We study the impact of these traumatic events by exploiting geographic heterogeneity in the duration and intensity of civil war, and the persistence of the battlefront along the “Gothic line†cutting through Northern-Central Italy. We find that the Communist Party gained votes in postwar elections where the Nazi occupation lasted longer, mainly at the expense of centrist parties. This effect persists until the late 1980s and appears to be driven by equally persistent changes in political attitudes.

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  • Nicola Fontana & Tommaso Nannicini & Guido Tabellini, 2017. "Historical Roots of Political Extremism: The Effects of Nazi Occupation of Italy," Working Papers 618, IGIER (Innocenzo Gasparini Institute for Economic Research), Bocconi University.
  • Handle: RePEc:igi:igierp:618
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    Cited by:

    1. Lichter, Andreas & Loeffler, Max & Siegloch, Sebastian, 2015. "The Economic Costs of Mass Surveillance: Insights from Stasi Spying in East Germany," IZA Discussion Papers 9245, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    2. Grossmann, Jakub & Jurajda, Štepán & Roesel, Felix, 2021. "Forced Migration, Staying Minorities, and New Societies: Evidence from Post-War Czechoslovakia," IZA Discussion Papers 14191, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    3. Francisco Villamil, 2021. "Mobilizing memories: The social conditions of the long-term impact of victimization," Journal of Peace Research, Peace Research Institute Oslo, vol. 58(3), pages 399-416, May.
    4. Mehic, Adrian, 2019. "Immigration and Right-Wing Populism: Evidence from a Natural Experiment," Working Papers 2019:5, Lund University, Department of Economics.
    5. Belmonte, Alessandro & Di Lillo, Armando, 2018. "From Italianization to Germanization : Division of Labor, Economic Rents, and Anti-German Attitudes in South Tyrol," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 379, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    6. Andreas Lichter & Max Löffler & Sebastian Siegloch, 2016. "The Long-Term Costs of Government Surveillance: Insights from Stasi Spying in East Germany," SOEPpapers on Multidisciplinary Panel Data Research 865, DIW Berlin, The German Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP).
    7. Davide Cipullo, 2021. "Gender Gaps in Political Careers: Evidence from Competitive Elections," CESifo Working Paper Series 9075, CESifo.
    8. Alessandro Bucciol & Luca Zarri, 2017. "The Lasting Legacy of Traumatic Events on Life Satisfaction," Working Papers 13/2017, University of Verona, Department of Economics.
    9. Belmonte, Alessandro, 2020. "State Capacity, Schooling, and Fascist Education: Evidence from the Reclamation of the Pontine Marshes," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 528, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    10. Gyongyosi, Gyozo & Verner, Emil, 2018. "Financial Crisis, Creditor-Debtor Conflict, and Political Extremism," VfS Annual Conference 2018 (Freiburg, Breisgau): Digital Economy 181587, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.

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    • N00 - Economic History - - General - - - General

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