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Skidmore College
First-Year Experience

Scribner Seminar Program
Course Description

Italy, Fascism and Jews

Instructor(s): Shirley Smith, Foreign Language and Literatures

Mussolini marched on Rome in 1922 with a group of Black Shirts. What happened before and after this historic moment is the subject of this seminar. Who challenged the legitimacy of the government? How was Mussolini's Fascism able to last twenty-two years? Italian Jews were an integral part of the political process until the Racial Laws in 1938, but who are Italy's Jews? We explore the history and culture (holidays and cuisine) of Jews from the first colony in Rome till the end of World War II. Historic texts, novels, memoirs, films, and political science treatises uncover different perspectives on the rise and fall of Fascism, anti-Semitism, and the survival of Italy and the Italian Jewish community.

Course offered