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Political union without social revolution: Vincenzo Gioberti's Primato

Haddock, Bruce Anthony 1998. Political union without social revolution: Vincenzo Gioberti's Primato. Historical Journal 41 (3) , pp. 705-723.

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Vincenzo Gioberti's Del primato morale e civile degli italiani (1843) has been acknowledged as a major influence on moderate liberal thinking in the Risorgimento. Yet historians and political theorists have tended to dismiss the text as ponderous, unreadable or worse. The concern of this paper is to present what was once seen as a canonical text in terms that might make its initial appeal intelligible. Gioberti's text is set in the context of theological reappraisals within the Catholic tradition sparked by the rise of the national idea. The Primato managed to bring together currents of thought which are often regarded as antithetical. Catholic universalism was used to buttress and legitimize a specific view of the Italian nation. Gioberti's synthesis was to have a lasting impact on Italian liberalism, fostering a regard for established traditions rather than abstract rights. It also served to isolate revolutionaries and reactionaries in a dramatic and decisive decade for political debate in Italy.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Department of Politics and International Relations (POLIR)
Additional Information: Pdf uploaded in accordance with publisher's policy at (accessed 25/02/2014).
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISSN: 0018-246X
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 04:53

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