2004
Volume 126, Issue 3
  • ISSN: 0040-7518
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1163

Abstract

This article shows how decadentism and radical nationalism clashed and combined in the life and works of Gabriele D’Annunzio. Usually D’Annunzio is either dissociated from fascism because of his decadent and elitist sensibilities or seen as one of its great forerunners who largely abandoned his decadentism. In contrast to both these approaches, this article highlights the fascist motives in D’Annunzio’s thought and political practice that arose from the complex relationship between decadentism and nationalism. In D’Annunzio’s life and works the ideal of the autonomous artist, as well as the decadent fascination for corruption, for the subjection of women, and for the destructive beauty of Medusa, fused in a paradoxical and fascist way with nationalistic aspirations and longings for vitality. Although this article thus addresses fascist motives in D’Annunzio’s decadent nationalism, it also reveals substantial differences between D’Annunzio’s art and political practice on the one hand and the spirit of Mussolini’s regime on the other.

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2013-11-01
2021-12-01
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  • Article Type: Research Article
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