Mussolini’s Colonial Inspiration
In its plans for the conquest of Eastern Europe, the Third Reich looked to the example set in Africa by Fascist Italy.
Machiavelli, Prince of…Democracy?
The other side of the Renaissance man, known today for promoting autocratic power.
Eighteenth-Century Spies in the European Silk Industry
Curious about the advancing wonders of the age, savants traveled abroad to gather trade secrets for their homeland.
Garlic and Social Class
Immigrants from southern Italy were stereotyped for their use of the aromatic vegetable.
Socially Sanctioned Love Triangles of Romantic-Era Italy
Eighteenth-century Italian noblewomen had one indispensable accessory: an extramarital lover.
Casa Malaparte Is a Strangely Awesome House
Built by a fascist-turned-communist writer in the 1940s, it belongs to no one architectural style. But the views!
The War Documentary That Never Was
John Huston's 1945 movie The Battle of San Pietro presents itself as a war documentary, but contains staged scenes. What should we make of it?
The Highest Flood in Italy This Century
Recent flooding in Venice has revived memories of a record-setting 1966 flood, which sparked an international rescue program for art and architecture.
What Does It Mean To Be Celtic?
How various nationalist groups have come to use "Celtic" as a coded way of saying "white."
The Romanticization of the Mediterranean
The idea that the disparate nations bordering the Mediterranean Sea represent a single region is the product of the nineteenth century.