'Distant Models: Italian Fascism, National Socialism and the lure of the Classics'

in Brill’s Companion to the Classics, Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany, ed. Helen Roche, Kyriakos Demetriou, Leiden (Brill) 2018, pp. 3-28.

This introduction to Brill’s Companion to the Classics, Fascist Italy and Nazi Germany sets the other contributions to the volume in context.

Natalie de Haan writes: “In her excellent Introduction Roche offers a balanced overview of recent research, with the valid observation that until recently scholars working on fascism tended to neglect the appropriation of the classical past in Germany and Italy. These appropriations were much more than mere window-dressing, not least because in many instances such uses of the classical past were bottom-up phenomena, reflecting the totalitarian grip upon all levels of society achieved by the Fascist and Nazi regimes. Indeed, many intellectuals working in academia, education, public administration, or the cultural world at large in Italy and Germany were not forced to appropriate classical antiquity for contemporary agendas, but rather appear to have felt the need to do so themselves.”

The ideas in this introduction have been more fully explored in a recent article in Fascism: Journal of Comparative Fascist Studies.