The Jews in Mussolini's Italy: From Equality to Persecution

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Univ of Wisconsin Press, 2006 - 419 pages

Often overshadowed by the persecution of Jews in Germany, the treatment of Jews in fascist Italy comes into sharp focus in this volume by Italian historian Michele Sarfatti. Beginning with a history of Italian Jews in the decades before fascism--when Jews were fully integrated into Italian national life--Sarfatti provides a deft and comprehensive history from the rise of fascism in 1922 to its defeat in 1945.
From the beginning of his regime, Mussolini degraded the relationship between Italian Jews and the state. In 1938, anti-Jewish legislation deprived Jews of their rights and their livelihoods--with laws that sometimes preceded the concurrent German legislation--and 1943 marked the beginning of physical persecution of Jews in areas not yet liberated by the Allies.
Sarfatti's work is a vigorous condemnation of Mussolini and his regime. Available in English for the first time, this revised and expanded edition uses thorough and careful statistical evidence to document how the Italian social climate changed from relatively just to irredeemably prejudicial. Most forcefully, Sarfatti demonstrates that Rome did not simply follow the lead of Berlin. Rather, Mussolini showed the ability to independently develop a hostile relationship with Italy's Jews, one that eventually led the Italian regime to cooperate in Hitler's "Final Solution."

The translation of this book has been funded by SEPS--Segretariato Europeo per le Pubblicazioni Scientifiche

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The City Textiles
The Attack on Jewish Equalily 19221936
The Attack on Jewish Rights 19361943
The Assault on Jewish Lives 19431945
Angelo Serenis Report to the Congress
Report on the Activities of the Union of
Italys Rabbis to Their Brethren 1937
Rarfaele Jona Relazione n 2 March 1945

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About the author (2006)

Michele Sarfatti is director of the Centro di documentazione ebraica contemporanea in Milan and the author of many books and articles about Jews in fascist Italy. John Tedeschi is a Reformation historian, and Anne C. Tedeschi is a book conservator. Their many co-translated works include the award-winning The Cheese and the Worms by Carlo Ginzburg.

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