This research monograph contribution is concerned with the Fascist period of rule in Italy and the memorialisation and commemoration of Mussolini. The towns of Latina, Predappio and the burial site of Mussolini are used as illustrative cases of historical selectivity, omission and dark tourism. Fieldwork was undertaken in 2017 and interview analysis conducted with curators, operators, owners and tourism authorities to better understand the accommodation of the fascist period through key heritage sites in Italy. What emerges is considerable evidence of the appeal of sites associated with Mussolini, most particularly but certainly not exclusively in the town of Predappio. The nature of the interpretation of these dark sites considered was invariably partial, selective and ideologically located in an apologistic frame of reference that was overwhelming positive to the regime of Il Duce. Furthermore, the sites and related heritage was being harnessed for commercial exploitation, often with dubious imagery and questionable materials. The appeal of these sites to organisations and individuals associated the extreme right makes the historically selective interpretation of even greater concern. These attractions that catalyse visitation do not provide historical record or serve to educate individuals about the regime and its crimes. Rather they subvert historically reality and reinforce an inaccurate and dangerously misleading perspective on this dark period of Italian history.
|Translated title of the contribution||A conspiracy of silence: Mussolini tourism and the legacy of fascism in today's Italy|
|Title of host publication||Dark Tourism: Reisen zu Stätten von Krieg, Massengewalt und NS-Verfolgung|
|Editors||Frank Bajohr, Axel Drecoll, John Lennon|
|Place of Publication||Berlin|
|Number of pages||17|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Sep 2020|
- Italian Fascism
- Dark Tourism
Lennon, J. (2020). Ein Komplott des Schweigens: Mussolini-Tourismus und das Erbe des Faschismus im heutigen Italien. In F. Bajohr, A. Drecoll, & J. Lennon (Eds.), Dark Tourism: Reisen zu Stätten von Krieg, Massengewalt und NS-Verfolgung (First ed., pp. 233-249). .