Under the Auspices of Dante: Italianità and Fascism in Brazil

PNF Headquarter Rome 1934

Currently, I am completing my book manuscript, tentatively titled “Under the Auspices of Dante: Italianità and Fascism in Brazil,” in which I study the diffusion of fascism in São Paulo, Brazil. Mussolini’s administration saw in the large number of Italians and people of Italian descent living in the state capitol—whose presence can be attributed to an aggressive plan formulated by Brazilian elites in the 19th century to “whiten” the country—a promising pool of future acolytes and thus worked hard to gain a foothold within Brazil’s Italian diaspora. My work pays particular attention to the reception of fascist ideas among the members of  São Paulo’s middle class, which mainly consisted of Italian business owners and professionals who were determined to distance themselves from popular notions of Italianness linked to socialism, anarchism, and racially-impure working-class populations. By revealing the role of fascist ideas, particularly Mussolini’s concept of Italian identity or italianità in the creation of the paulista middle class, I help to clarify the origins of Brazil’s complex racial politics and expose some of the contradictions lying at the heart of the ethno-nationalist narratives that have recently regained their popular appeal in Italy, Brazil, the United States, and much of Europe.


2020    "Editors' Introduction.“ Fascism and Anti-fascism Since 1945 Radical History Review, 138. 1-9.

2020    "Teaching It Can't Happen Here in the Trump Era: How to Rewrite Fascism" Teaching Radical History, Radical                        History Review, 138. 171-178.

2020     “Navigating between Italianità and Brasilidade: The case of Menotti del Picchia.” In Literatura da (i)migração no                   Brasil. Edited by Wail Hassan and Rogério Lima. Rio de Janeiro: Edições Makunaima. 100-121.

2019     "Un bruttissimo affare:  Francesco Guccini and Loriano Macchiavelli's Literary Inquiry into the biennio 1943-                         1945". Forum Italicum: A Journal of Italian Studies. Vol. 53(3) 731–747

2019     “Contemporary Epistemologies of Militarization in the Global South: Palimpsests and Accumulative Processes in                 Lampedusa and Lebanon" Cultural Dynamics: Insurgent Scholarship on Culture, Politics, and                                                   Power. Vol. 31(4) 291 –307

2019     “Militarizing the Global South,” Special Issue of Cultural Dynamics: Insurgent Scholarship on Culture,                                      Politics, and Power.

2018     “Paulo Lins.” Twenty-First-Century Brazilian Writers, Volume 384 in the Dictionary of Literary                                                 Biography (DLB).

2017     Review of “Gregor, A. James, Reflections on Italian Fascism, An Interview with Antonio Messina.”                                           Forum Italicum Vol. 51, n. 3.

2017     “Dante’s Purgatório Canto VI in Nineteenth-Century Brazil: Translating the Nazione/Nação.”                                                   Mester XLV, Special Issue Translation, Travel, Circulation.

2016     “Framing Violence: Reader and Narrator in Pai contra Mãe” in Emerging Dialogues on Machado de Assis, New                     York: Palgrave McMillan.