Anti-Fascism in European History

From the 1920s to Today
$90.00 / €86.00 / £73.00
Ebook version is open access (Opening the Future program)
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300 pages
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The increasing radicalization of political life in most countries in Europe lends special relevance to studies of the antifascist legacies on the continent. This insightful collection of essays is an in-depth review of antifascism in Slovenia, setting it in the context of related movements elsewhere in Europe. The period treated by the 19 essays comprises the interwar period, World War Two, and the post-war decades. The comparative and transnational perspectives advanced by the volume change our understanding of antifascism.

The essays deal with the right-wing but also left-wing instrumentalization of antifascism, with a particular focus on the communist and post-communist periods. The authors point out that antifascism comes in various strains, whether inspired by liberalism, social democracy, communism, monarchism, anarchism, or even Christian conservatism. The contributors bring to light several overlooked antifascist actors, campaigns, and organisations, mostly in Slovenia and the Adriatic area.


Introduction: What is Anti-Fascism? Its Values, its Strengths, its Diversities – Jože Pirjevec, Egon Pelikan, and Sabrina P. Ramet  


Chapter 1:  Hate Speech – Jože Pirjevec 

Chapter 2:  Comparison of Fascist and national defense discourse –Vesna Mikolič

Chapter 3:  Fascism, Anti-fascism, and Ethnic Engineering in the Former Austrian Littoral – Borut Klabjan

Chapter 4:  Persevering on the Ramparts of the Nation:  The Anti-fascism of Educated Women, Feminists, and Activists in the Littoral in the 1920s – Marta Verginella 

Chapter 5:  The anti-fascism of the Slovenian and Croatian Clergy in the Julian March during the Interwar Period – A View from the Vatican – Egon Pelikan 


Chapter 6:  The Anti-fascism of Hans & Sophie Scholl:  Intellectual Sources of the White Rose – Sabrina P. Ramet and Christine M. Hassenstab

Chapter 7:  The Committee against Neofascism and Racial Prejudices:  Nordic Anti-Fascist Organizing and International Solidarity in the 1960s – Pontus Järvstad 

Chapter 8:  Anti-fascism in the land of holy water blessed by the swastika:  The case of the Slovak State -- Marek Syrný and Anton Hruboň 

Chapter 9:  Mussolini, Vilfan and the Slovenian minority – Gianfranco Cresciani 

Chapter 10:  From the Bauhaus to Buchenwald and to Berlin:  Anti-fascism and Career in the Life of Franz Ehrlich – Klaus Tragbar


Chapter 11:  Passing the Torch:  The Challenges of Anti-fascist Memory Transmission through Youth Ritual and Commemoration in the GDR – Catherine J. Plum

Chapter 12:  Memory Practices in Slovenia through the Lens of Public Opinion – Vida Rožac Darovec 

Chapter 13:  A Note about the Collective Memory of Anti-Fascism since World War Two and its Revision – Božo Repe 

Chapter 14:  A Dire Warning to All Ethnic Minorities in Europe?  Fascist Repression in South Tyrol and the Formation of Swedish-Speaking Anti-fascism in Finland – Kasper Braskén 

Chapter 15:  Maritime Communists Against Fascism and in Defense of the USSR:  Transnational Anti-fascism in a Danish Perspective, 1933-1938 – Jesper Jørgensen 

Afterword:  “Are you a communist?  No, I am an anti-fascist” –  Nigel Copsey 

About the authors
For further reading
Index of Names

“Timely and original, this edited volume brings together a combination of thoughtful and well-crafted articles. Many of the case studies and micro-histories of Italy, Slovenia, Germany, Denmark, Slovakia, and Finland cast new light on anti-fascism’s important role. This volume is essential reading for all scholars who care about the past and the future of Central Europe.”
“At a time when ‘fascism’ and ‘anti-fascism’ have too often been flung around like weapons in a children’s wet sponge fighting using filthy water, this extraordinarily comprehensive book is a welcome addition to the small number of reliable sources about the modern fight against the extreme right available to serious academics and political journalists. With an unusual degree of conceptual sophistication in the way it addresses the rich theme of anti-fascism, it not only offers a uniquely wide coverage of its many interwar manifestations, but also takes a hard look at its complex post-war evolutions and permutations. Nor does it neglect the special place in the struggle against fascism occupied by women and communists in the defense of their own causes. Anti-Fascism in European History sets a new benchmark for genuinely comparative and collaborative politico-historical studies purged of any trace of spurious distinctions between the center and the periphery, or the political, the... more