Galeazzo Ciano: The Fascist Pretender

By Tobias Hof

© 2021

Building on extensive archival research and important scholarly analysis, Galeazzo Ciano: The Fascist Pretender examines the life of Galeazzo Ciano, foreign minister of fascist Italy from 1936 to 1943 and Benito Mussolini’s son-in-law. Ciano’s life serves as a lens through which to gain a better understanding of crucial issues of Italian and European fascism, including the fascistization of society and politics, foreign relations, and the problem of succession. The biography follows an innovative thematic structure that focuses on major aspects of Ciano’s life, including his family, his political career, his diplomacy, and his desire to succeed Mussolini.

Filling a substantial gap in the existing literature on the history of fascism, this book is the first comprehensive analysis of a key player of Italian fascism other than Mussolini; it also offers a long overdue critical assessment of Ciano’s famous diary, one of the most important texts from the period. Using visual materials such as photographs and films as sources and not just as illustrative material, Tobias Hof allows us to rethink our understanding of fascism and offers a new perspective on the history of fascist Italy.

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Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Italian Studies
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 472 pages
  • Illustrations: 21
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.4in x 9.2in
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SKU# SP006497

  • PUBLISHED MAY 2021

    From: $63.75

    Regular Price: $85.00

    ISBN 9781487507985
  • AVAILABLE MAY 2021

    From: $63.75

    Regular Price: $85.00

Quick Overview

Through the prism of the rise and fall of Galeazzo Ciano (1903–1944), this biography is a comprehensive study of a leading member of the fascist regime other than Benito Mussolini.

Galeazzo Ciano: The Fascist Pretender

By Tobias Hof

© 2021

Building on extensive archival research and important scholarly analysis, Galeazzo Ciano: The Fascist Pretender examines the life of Galeazzo Ciano, foreign minister of fascist Italy from 1936 to 1943 and Benito Mussolini’s son-in-law. Ciano’s life serves as a lens through which to gain a better understanding of crucial issues of Italian and European fascism, including the fascistization of society and politics, foreign relations, and the problem of succession. The biography follows an innovative thematic structure that focuses on major aspects of Ciano’s life, including his family, his political career, his diplomacy, and his desire to succeed Mussolini.

Filling a substantial gap in the existing literature on the history of fascism, this book is the first comprehensive analysis of a key player of Italian fascism other than Mussolini; it also offers a long overdue critical assessment of Ciano’s famous diary, one of the most important texts from the period. Using visual materials such as photographs and films as sources and not just as illustrative material, Tobias Hof allows us to rethink our understanding of fascism and offers a new perspective on the history of fascist Italy.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Toronto Italian Studies
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 472 pages
  • Illustrations: 21
  • Dimensions: 6.3in x 1.4in x 9.2in
  • Reviews

    "In this splendidly nuanced study, Tobias Hof has provided the first serious English-language biography of Galeazzo Ciano, the son-in-law of the Duce. Ciano was a rich, bright, and clever fascist whose story ended in early death when he was executed by Mussolini’s regime in January 1944, with Mussolini cravenly allowing his son-in-law to die for his own failings as a dictator. As Tobias Hof notes, the Mussolinian version of tyranny was to be a one-generation affair."


    Richard Bosworth, Senior Research Fellow in History, Jesus College, University of Oxford

    "Italian fascism is not only Mussolini. This long-overdue academic biography of Galeazzo Ciano is an important contribution towards a better understanding of the fascist dictatorship. Fascism was not a monolithic power but rather a network of powers, where familism, social environments, and strong friendships were crucial to build careers and to destroy them. Because of his origins and generation, Ciano cannot be enumerated among the fascist gerarchi of the ‘first wave’ like Italo Balbo and Dino Grandi. Tobias Hof's biography of Ciano enables a better understanding of the consolidation of fascism and the rapid rise and collapse of powerful people and a political system. Hof tries to answer the question of when and, above all, if Ciano was really considered Mussolini’s heir."


    Patrizia Dogliani, Professor of Contemporary History, University of Bologna
  • Author Information

    Tobias Hof is a Privatdozent for Modern History at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universit├Ąt.
  • Table of contents

    List of Illustrations
    Acknowledgments

    Introduction

    1. The Family

    The Son of a Hero
    The Ciano Family in Livorno
    Ciano’s Friends
    The Fascist Family
    Shaping Italian Society 

    2. The Politician

    The Minister
    The Fascist
    The Elite
    The Catholic and Monarchist
    The Fascist Oligarchy 

    3. The Diplomat

    Italy’s Role in the World
    Diplomacy and Performance
    Parallel and Secret Diplomacy
    Blackmail, Terror, and War
    Assessing Fascist Italy’s Foreign Diplomacy 

    4. The Successor

    The Deputy Duce
    Fascist Masculinities: Ciano versus Mussolini
    The Undecided One
    The “Good Fascist”
    Succession and Struggle in Fascism

    Epilogue: A Man of His Time

    Appendix

    Chronology
    Abbreviations
    Bibliography
    Index

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