- Tesi di Laurea Magistrale (2012): Strength and Optimism: Ronald Reagan’s Soviet Policy beyond the Neoconservatives, Università di Bologna (Sede di Forlì), Facoltà di Scienze Politiche “Roberto Ruffilli”, Tutor: Mario Del Pero.
- Tesi magistrale (2012), L’amministrazione Nixon e il Cile di Allende, 1970–1973, Università del Salento, Tutor: Giuliana Iurlano.
- “Anatolij Sharansky e l’impero del male”, in Eunomia, II, Giugno 2008, pp. 145-224.
The essay explores the incredible history of the former Russian dissident Anatolij Sharansky who, mindful of his experience, believes it is necessary to fight hard totalitarianism wherever they are, because – if societies based on fear are openly challenged in the name of freedom and democracy – in the long run they end up crashing down, just because of their inherent weakness. For this reason, only when the United States, with the Jackson-Vanik amendment, they would have settled with the Soviet Union relations directly proportional to their respect for human rights, the movements in support of dissidents were strengthened and the policy of appeasement showed openly its limits. Sharansky recalls the Helsinki lesson, namely that when the petition for the human rights are supported by concrete action, is it really possible to advance the cause of freedom and peace.
- “Le elezioni presidenziali cilene del 1970 e la spoiling operation degli Stati Uniti”, in Eunomia, 1/2013, pp. 273–296, http://siba-ese.unisalento.it/index.php/eunomia/article/view/13018.
The official entry of Latin America in the bipolar competition had given way to a real anti-Communist crusade in the region since the strong popular discontent, due to economic backwardness and political instability, offered the favorable humus to Communist infiltration in the Western Hemisphere. Thus, it was necessary to maintain a US sphere of influence within the Southern continent. The possibility, more and more concrete, that the Chilean presidential election of 1970 would bring to power an avowed Marxist posed to the US government one of the most serious challenges it had ever faced in this area. Therefore, concerned at the consequences that the victory of a socialist candidate could have on the US economic and political interests in Chile – in addition to serious geopolitical repercussions throughout the region –, the United States pledged to prevent such an eventuality. So, it was decided to finance a spoiling operation against the Popular Unity, the communists, socialists and left-wing elements coalition who supported Allende. In order to achieve this objective, the CIA resorted to covert operations and started an intensive propaganda campaign, relying on the fear that the victory of Allende would be identified with violence and Stalinist repression. Despite these efforts, the US “spoiling campaign” was not successful and the Socialist candidate Salvador Allende won the 1970 presidential election, although by a narrow margin.
- “Un mondo in disordine: le diverse storie dell’Atlantico”, in Ricerche di Storia Politica, 2/2012, pp. 173–188.
The article reconstructs the several political genealogies of Atlantic history and the equally many methodological approaches and interpretations of the Atlantic world, discussing how these transnational histories relate to the latest historiographical perspectives on global history. This review essay discusses the “white” Euro-American Atlantic, the “black” and “red” Atlantic, and the commercial and consumerist Atlantic. It does so by highlighting how different tonalities concur to define a diverse and changing Atlantic, depending on the subjective, geographic, cultural or social perspective one adopts. From different points of observation, the article focuses on the reasons for the divergence between Atlantic history and political history, and the opportunities of dialogue between the two.
- “Living in Transition in the Atlantic World: Democratic Revolution and Commercial Society in the Political Writings of Thomas Paine”, in Nuevo Mundo-Mundos Nuevos, Coloquios, Puesto en línea el 27 junio 2012, http://nuevomundo.revues.org/63485.
By reconstructing Thomas Paine’s vision of the Atlantic world, this paper will discuss three main points. Firstly, it will be demonstrated that Paine’s political thought articulated an understanding of the historical and theoretical relationship between commercial society and representative democracy. This will highlight the convergences and divergences between the American and French revolutions, and the mechanisms of political and social transition that moved the Atlantic world into the nineteenth century. Secondly, it will be argued that this historical and theoretical relationship between commercial society and representative democracy, found in Paine’s work, claims to reconsider contrasting conceptions of Atlantic history. From its beginnings, Atlantic history has been treated as political history, but new Atlantic studies – such as social and economic histories or histories of material culture – have done much to eclipse the political aspects of the history of the Atlantic world by looking at other, equally interesting factors. By reading Paine, this paper will instead argue that a faithful account of Atlantic history cannot hold on to a strict distinction between the political and social. Instead, the political and the societal are interrelated, both conceptual camera lenses through which the Atlantic world during this era can be more accurately captured.
- Una Rivoluzione per lo Stato: Thomas Paine e la Rivoluzione americana nel mondo atlantico, Soveria Mannelli, Rubbettino, 2012, pp. 257.
Over the course of his intense political and intellectual life, Thomas Paine assumed different semblances and maintained sometimes discordant political positions. In the book we will meet the officer of excise of the British State against whom the north American colonies would declare their independence. We will meet the collaborator of the Superintendent of Finances of the Continental Congress. We will again meet the man of the bank, worried about protecting what he thought of as a fundamental financial institution for the development of a national market against popular protests. These diverse faces do not reflect an incoherent author or an opportunistic politician, but show a man capable of interpreting the profound and contradictory political and social transformations of his time, as few others protagonists of the revolution were capable. And these transformations outlined the historical context in which the decisive confrontation for real independence took place, that is the construction of the early American State.
- “Harold Lasswell, the “problem of World Order”, and the Historic Mission of the American middle class”, in F. Fasce, M. Vaudagna, R. Baritono, Beyond the Nation: Pushing the Boundaries of US History from a Transatlantic Perspective, Torino, Otto, 2013, pp. 225–254.
The author reconstructs Lasswell’s main political contribution to American social science: his universal conception of the middle class as a social and cultural device that shaped both the American sociologists’ systemic understanding of society and the consensual framework of the American world politics after the World War II. His policy science not only defined the function of symbols and values in society, but had also forged the term and the vocational role of the middle class that was promulgated by the liberal historians of the fifties, and that actually became the “common sense” of the American political culture during the Cold War: as middle class was a “state of mind”, it could be “society-wide”, namely all peoples, social groups and personality types could become part of it, enjoy its moral privileges and concur to its historic mission.
- Tesi di Dottorato (2013): Il nazionalismo afro-americano e la Cuba rivoluzionaria dal 1959 agli anni del Black Power, Tutor: Stefano Luconi.
My research takes into consideration the political and cultural exchanges between revolutionary Cuba and some African American leaders in the Sixties and Seventies. While civil rights advocates distanced themselves from Castro’s Cuba, many black radicals perceived the alliance with Cuba as an opportunity to internationalize their struggle. As they were promoting revolutionary Marxism and Third-worldism, Cuban guevarism represented a source of inspiration for them. The research argues that Black Power internationalism had its roots in the black nationalists’ support for the Cuban revolution, and it also shows that, even if the Castro regime initially supported black radicals’ protests, the ideological incompatibility between socialism and black nationalism caused many clashes between African Americans and Cuban communists. This incompatibility became more and more obvious when Ernesto Guevara left Cuba in 1965. Since then, the growing political influence of the Soviet Union contributed to worsen black Americans’ relations with Cuba: USSR’s strict Marxism – many blacks argued – was not the solution to solve the racial problem in the US.
- Alla Ricerca di una più perfetta Unione. Convenzioni e Costituzioni negli Stati Uniti della prima metà dell’800, Milano, FrancoAngeli, 2012, pp. 291.
As an instrument for revising the fundamental laws of the State, the device of the constitutional convention proved vital to reach that idea of “more perfect Union” called for by the Charter of Philadelphia in 1787. Up to now, though, this institutional device has been exclusively used by the member states of the Federation. By analyzing both the procedures and issues addressed by the constitutional revision processes at the state level, the first aim of this book is that of identifying the contribution given by the states to the creation of a “more Perfect Union”, during the so called antebellum period. Finally, in the light of a political context punctuated by a series of federal crisis centered on the slavery issue, this book reflects upon the potential links between the constitutional development of the states and the political and institutional dynamics which brought the Federation to the edge of the Civil War.
- “Verso una more perfect union. Problemi di rappresentanza politica e revisione costituzionale negli Stati Uniti del primo Ottocento”, in L. Scuccimarra, G. Ruocco (a cura di), Il governo del popolo. Rappresentanza, partecipazione, esclusione alle origini della democrazia moderna, vol. 2, Dalla Restaurazione alla guerra franco-prussiana, Roma, Viella, 2012, pp. 375–399.
This essay discusses the constitutional origin and the development of the political representation in the United States, both at the Federal and at the state level. In particular it focuses on the relation between the issues of legislative apportionment, taxation system and slavery. After considering the way these three issues were discussed during the Constitutional Convention of Philadelphia, this essay will analyze the consequences of the federal representative system on the choices adopted by the states and their democratic development in the first half of nineteenth century. In particular the essay will focus on the Southern states, considering the way in which the debate over the nature of slavery was deeply intertwined with the problem of the state-legislative apportionment.
- “Governatori sudisti e crisi costituzionali negli Stati Uniti della prima metà dell‘800”, in Storia, Amministrazione, Costituzione, 2/2011, pp. 7–47.
With particular reference to the first half of the nineteenth century, the American historiography has always stressed the limited role played by the state governors since the origins of the federal system. This essay aims at revaluate the overall importance and effectiveness of the state Governors in the first half of the nineteenth century, with a particular focus on the Southern states and the comparison of two case studies.
- “Da Covenant a Convention: riflessione sulle origini dell’esperienza costituzionale statunitense”, in Cahiers Adriana Petracchi. Quaderni di studi storici, 2/2011, pp. 143–176.
This essays analyzes the concept of convention and its political development at the origin of the US institutional experience.
- La NATO e la guerra al terrorismo durante la presidenza di Bush, Roma, Aracne editrice, 2012, pp. 304.
NATO entered the 21st century unprepared to tackle international terrorism. The 9/11 attacks showed its strategic weakness, while putting the US on a revolutionary path. Washington started a “hyper-securitization” process, which was questioned by some allies in Europe. The loyalty of the UK was guaranteed, but France and Germany opposed the militarization of the US foreign policy. The Western cohesion was at risk and the repercussions on NATO were sounding. When the major combat operations ended in Iraq and Afghanistan, the insurgencies revealed the US deficiencies to tackle stabilization and reconstruction operations. Washington was forced to ask for political and military support to Europe and, at the same time, Paris and Berlin realized their national interests had the need of the US support. Thus, the crisis was left behind. However, at the end of the Bush years, differences between the allies remained about the role of NATO, its commitments in the Middle East and the burden sharing effect.
- “L’inevitabile declino? L’ordine occidentocentrico alla prova dell’understretching”, in Geopolitica, 1/2013, pp. 65–76.
In Europe and the United States, the financial crisis has caused significant effects on the organization of State finances and, as a consequence, on the politics of power. Backed by the public opinion, the “welfare state” has been privileged over the “warfare state”. Thus, the United States has started a process of withdrawal from the international theatre, while Europe does not seem to have the resources and the willingness to take on new geopolitical responsibilities. The bridge which connects the two sides of the Atlantic rests on two unstable pillars. If not reversed, the flow of power exiting from the West, could then change the equation of the global balance of power with radical consequences for the current world order.
- “La politica estera degli Usa, la visione ‘reaganiana’ di Mitt Romney”, in Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionali (ISPI) Analysis, 117/2012.
The most part of the US public opinion generally remembers the 80s as a successful decade, characterized by a great economic recovery and the victory in the Cold War at the expense of the Soviet Union. Those years came after the uncertain 70s, when the US weakness was particularly visible. Many authors used to describe the President Ronald Reagan, as the leading “actor” of that patriotic renaissance. More than 30 years later, the ghost of the US decline is back. Mitt Romney, the Grand Old Party candidate for the presidential election to be held in November 2012, declared one of his main goals is to reverse this widespread perception. What is his perspective of the world politics? And, should he won the election, how would he act on the international stage to defend the US and Western interests around the globe? The article addresses these issues, focusing on the suggested historical parallelism between Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama, and – as a consequence – between Ronald Reagan and Mitt Romney.
- Tesi di Dottorato (2013): Democrazia e cattolicesimo negli Stati Uniti. La libertà di religione e il pensiero di John Courtney Murray, Università di Bologna, Tutor: Tiziano Bonazzi, Dottorato in “Europa e Americhe. Costituzioni, dottrine e istituzioni politiche – Nicola Matteucci”, Scuola di Scienze Politiche, Università di Bologna.
The work analyses the thought of John Courtney Murray from the political and theological perspective. It focuses on the influences of Catholic and non-Catholic intellectual circles on the categories used to interpret the history of Catholicism and American Catholics, and the relevance of the jesuit’s theory on freedom of religion for the integration of the Catholic community in the American society.
- “Washington, 5/6/2012”, in Lettere internazionali, La rivista – il Mulino, 5 giugno 2012, http://www.rivistailmulino.it/news/newsitem/index/Item/News:NEWS_ITEM:1632.
A brief contribution on the issue of religious freedom raised by the Unites States Episcopal Conference to stop the so-called “birth control mandate”.
- Tesi di Dottorato (2013): Una grande narrazione del capitalismo: potere e scienze sociali nel pensiero politico di Daniel Bell, Tutor: Maurizio Ricciardi, Cotutor: Francesco Tuccari. Dottorato in “Europa e Americhe. Costituzioni, dottrine e istituzioni politiche – Nicola Matteucci”, Scuola di Scienze Politiche, Università di Bologna.
This dissertation deals with Daniel Bell’s political thought between the post-war era and the Seventies. Bell’s political reflection appears to be, to say it in the words of J.-F. Lyotard, a “grand narrative” of capitalism. It points out the height of fordism by assuming the end of ideology, and then highliths the post-industrial transformations of capitalism, emphasizing the effects produced on power relations and the legitimacy of the socio-political system. In Bell’s view, capitalism is not only an economic system, but a complex social system which places individuals in the power structure by means of subordination and coordination processes. Therefore, “what holds a society together?”, apparently a sociological question, is the political question that marks his intellectual path. The link between politics and sociology marks Bell’s thought and shows how social sciences are assumed to be the political theory of modernity, insofar as they analyze the political side of social relations as well as the social element inherent to the workings of political institutions.
- “Tra ‘Old South’ e ‘Old World’: i ‘Southern Agrarians’ e la critica conservatrice del progresso americano”, in Ricerche di Storia Politica, 1/2012, pp. 3–23.
The essay deals with a lesser-known wing of American conservatism: anti-progressive and anti-industrial Southern Agrarian intellectuals, based at Vanderbilt University of Nashville (Tn.). Between the 1920s and the 1930s, they focused on a critical analysis of the self-representation of America as a progressive nation, and affirm the primacy of a traditional and agrarian Gemeinschaft over the modern and industrial society embodied by the United States. Their view lied on a reevaluation of the Old South intellectual heritage through the appropriation of elements of conservative European thought. The essay thus emphasizes the influence of Europe in shaping the Southern Agrarians’ vision of the traditional society. Such vision was markedly different from the conventional image conveyed by progressive and industrial America. Overthrowing the usual exceptionalist separation between Europe and America, the Southern Agrarians joined the intellectual struggle to redefine the American identity.
- “Dalla fine dell’ideologia alla società post-industriale: Daniel Bell sociologo del potere”, in Scienza & Politica, 45/2011, pp. 81–99, http://scienzaepolitica.unibo.it/article/view/2716.
The essay aims at overcoming the usual representation of the American sociologist Daniel Bell as the theorist – or the “ideologist” – of the end of ideology. As The Economist put it in his obituary in February 2011, Bell was one of the “great sociologists of capitalism”. In this essay I will make clear why I prefer this definition, reevaluating Bell’s works published after his famous book on The End of Ideology. Namely, I will focus on his reflections which stem from The Coming of Post-Industrial Society and The Cultural Contradictions of Capitalism, where a clear analysis of the structural changes in capistalistic economies and the shortcomings of the Welfare State emerges. This analysis leads us to the political, economic and social crisis of the contemporary world.
- “La ‘sociocrazia’ nell’America tra Otto e Novecento. Il pensiero politico e sociale di Lester Frank Ward (1841–1913)”, in Annali della Fondazione Einaudi, vol. XLVI (2012).
This essay deals with the political and social thought of Lester Frank Ward (1841–1913). Ward was a relevant social and political thinker in the United States during the Gilded Age and the first decade of the Progressive Era. In his works, published between 1883 and 1906, and in a great number of articles, he supported rational and conscious planning to improve the condition of society, defended State interventionism against laissez-faire and developed an ideal of “sociocracy”, which he considered the scientific government of society by society. In this essay, I analyze Ward’s life in order to contextualize his ideas in a historical and biographical framework, especially focusing on his views on “sociocracy”.
- Tesi di Laurea Magistrale (2011): La caduta del Muro di Berlino nella stampa USA, Università Roma Tre, Tutor: Daniele Fiorentino.
- “Marxismo, identità e nazione: la vita e il pensiero di Daniel De Leon”, in Pier Paolo Poggio (ed.), L’altronovecento. Comunismo eretico e pensiero critico. Il capitalismo americano e i suoi critici, vol. III, Milano, Jaca Book, (2013), pp. 375–390.
This essay discusses the life and thought of Daniel De Leon (1852–1914), the leader of the Socialist Labor Party of the United States. De Leon was born in Curaçao, a Dutch colony in the Caribbean Sea, and was educated between American and Europe, before moving to the United States in the 1870s. After a period as a Lecturer of International Law at Columbia University, in 1890 he became the most prominent leader of the SLP, a position he held until his death. The essay investigates De Leon’s thought from two different angles: on the one hand, it discusses his biography in order to consider the ways in which national and cultural influences shaped his intellectual production; on the other hand, it analyses writings and speeches with the objective of reconstructing the developments of his thought during the various phases of his life (the growth of the SLP during the 1890s; the failure of the Socialist Trade and Labor Alliance; the founding of the Industrial Workers of the World).
- “Social Norms and Legal Rules. A Comparison of the Theories of H. Hart, J. Rawls and F. Hayek”, in Annali della Fondazione Einaudi, vol. XLVI (2012), pp. 359–383.
This paper sets out to analyze a group of liberal theories that take a social practice-based approach, namely those contained in The Concept of law by Herbert Hart; Political Liberalism and Justice as Fairness by John Rawls; The Constitution of Liberty and Law, Legislation and Liberty by Friedrich Hayek. This essay focuses on the sources of Law and its role in a modern society. It compares these theories in order to identify their negative and positive aspects. It argues that, while Rawls’s project is a fruitful evolution of Hart’s insights into legal jurisprudence, Hayek’s theory contradicts his own liberal stance and ends up embracing a conservative point of view.
- Tesi di Dottorato (2012), The Politics of Asymmetry. The evolution of the US-Japan Alliance, Istituto Italiano di Scienze Umane (SUM), Tutor: Filippo Andreatta.
- “The Shield and the Chrysanthemum. Missile Defense and the evolution of the Japanese Security Strategy”, in WARning, 1/2013.
Japan is moving along a long-term trajectory to assume a “normal” security role, gradually eroding the self-binding prescriptions that have marked its foreign policy identity during the Post War era. Recently, this process has been accelerated by the emergence of new security threats in the East Asian security environment. In the short-term, the North Korean nuclear and ballistic program is the most immediate threat for Japan. In the longer term, Chinese military modernization and the increasing power projection capacity of the PRC represent the main strategic challenges. As a result of these trends, Japan is moving away from its traditional post-war self-restraint and is attempting to craft a more assertive security strategy in response to what it perceives as newfound security realities. The development of the US-Japan Theatre Missile Defense represents a crucial step in this direction. On the one hand, Japan’s participation in the Ballistic Missile Defense system represents the de facto overcoming a considerable part the legal and political underpinnings that had sustained the “Culture of Antimilitarism”. On the other hand, it contributes to redefine the Japanese role in the alliance with the United States, enhancing the interoperability of forces and promoting a unified chain of command and control. These developments are likely to encourage Japan to play a role of “hub nation” and active junior partner in the US-led military apparatus in East Asia.
- “No more a security consumer”, in ISPI Commentary, April 2013.
The American pivot to Asia, the increasing military capabilities of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and the growing threat posed by the nuclear and ballistic program of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), have accelerated the evolution of the US-Japan alliance that had started after the end of the Cold War. Even if Japan remains the cornerstone of the US engagement in the region, its bargaining power vis à vis the United States has diminished within the evolving security environment. This has forced Tokyo to rethink the main tenets of its security strategy.
- “Japan and the US Pivot to Asia Pacific”, in LSE IDEAS Strategic Update, January 2013. (Republished also as ETH Zurich ISN Report in February 2013).
This paper analyses the consequences of the US pivot to Asia on the US-Japan alliance and on Japanese foreign and security policies. On the one hand, the US pivot is reassuring for Tokyo, since it seeks to “rebalance” Chinese military ascendency and to strengthen extended deterrence in the region. On the other hand, it contributes to the acceleration of the “normalization” of Japanese security policies, speeding the process of overcoming the institutional self-binding prescriptions that underpinned Japan’s post-war paciﬁsm. This process, inaugurated by the ﬁrst post-Cold War renewal of the US-Japan Alliance in 1997 and culminating with the adoption of the “dynamic defence concept” in 2010 and the relaxation of the Three Principles of Arms Control in 2012, created a vicious cycle for Japan. During the post-war era, paciﬁst self binding prescriptions functioned as “anti-entrapment devices” preventing Tokyo from becoming involved in the conﬂicts that marked the Cold War in Asia. Today an increasingly “normal” Japan is no longer able to resist US pressure for a more active role in the alliance and less unequal burden sharing. Moreover, China’s military rise renders Tokyo ever more dependent on US forces. These trends compel Japan to accept further integration into the US military apparatus in the region and to take additional steps towards the deﬁnitive abandonment of Japan’s paciﬁst identity.
- “State Capitalism: Can it Work?”, in Aspenia, July 2012.
The Recent crisis has reawakened the battle of ideas between free market capitalism and alternative models. While the West seems to have no immediate answer to the question of how to rethink the relationship between real economy, finance and politics, Chinese state capitalism is looking like a possible option in terms of efficiency and growth. But behind the challenge to global governance posed by Beijing lurk many risks.
- “Hosts and Hostilities. Base Politics in Italy and Japan” in Silvio Beretta, Fabio Rugge, Alex Bekofsky, Italy and Japan. How Similar Are They?, London, Springer, 2013.
One of the characteristic post war Japan and Italy share is the presence of a vast network of American bases on their sovereign territory. The aim of these bases varied since their edification. During the early postwar period they contributed to keep under control the former enemies. During the Cold War, they were essential elements of a “double containment” policy. After the Cold War they become fundamental enablers of the American “command of the commons”. Even if the purpose of the US bases has been someway similar, “base politics” has had a very different impact on domestic and foreign policies of the two countries. In Japan the opposition has been constant and intense, while in Italy the American presence has been almost welcome. I will highlight how dynamics related to local, domestic and international politics determined these different approaches to the presence of the bases.
- “Antiamericanismo e titoismo: gli anni Cinquanta e la ‘zona grigia jugoslava’” in Contemporanea, 1/2013, pp. 65–86.
After the breaking of the Tito-Stalin political alliance in 1948, the Yugoslavian regime reviewed its national and foreign policy. It established the strategy and goals of the non-alignment movement and, at same time, an ambivalent Yugoslavian-American partnership. Anti-Americanism in Yugoslavia followed this political evolution; therefore the anti-American propaganda, shaped on the Soviet example in the 1940s, echoed the proclamations of the non-alignment international movement. For the Communist party and in particular for its leaders, anti-Americanism was an instrument to confirm the loyalty to the world-wide socialist cause, and legitimate their power in front of the public opinion. Furthermore, Anti-Americanism was meant to give evidence of Yugoslavian independence in front of western allies and to offer the example of a non-alignment foreign policy. Through the analysis of the Yugoslavian press, the government policies, and the documents of the US Department of State (the Foreign Relations of the United States), the author has examined the phenomenon of the Yugoslavian anti-Americanism as a key to reach a better historical understanding of the “Yugoslavian grey zone”.
- Tesi di Dottorato (2012): For God’s sake! Lift the embargo to Spain. L’amministrazione Roosevelt, i liberal e la guerra civile spagnola, Università di Bologna, Tutor: Mario Del Pero.
- “La politica del governo degli Stati Uniti nella Guerra civile spagnola”, in Ricerche di Storia Politica, 2/2013, pp. 183–198.
The article discusses the historiographical debate on the policy of the United States government toward the Spanish Civil War. The essay focuses on two crucial issues. The first are the reasons of the “non-intervention”, which resulted in a series of legislative measures such as the “moral embargo” of August 1936, the Joint Congressional Resolution of January 1937, and the Neutrality Act of May 1937. The second issue are the reasons that rendered the Roosevelt Administration “deaf” to the requests of politicians and exponents of civil society to extend, at first, the embargo to Germany and Italy, and to eventually lift it at a later time. In particular, the author discusses the historiographical interpretations on Roosevelt’s behavior during the Civil War and compares the US and the Spanish historiographies.
- Tesi di Laurea Magistrale (2011): Ida B. Wells e la Lotta contro i Linciaggi negli Stati Uniti d’America, Università degli studi di Napoli “L’Orientale”, Tutor: Elisabetta Bini.
The main aim of my thesis is to verify how influential the figure of Ida B. Wells was. She was one of the most important black activists during the end of nineteenth century in the United States of America. She began her activity for her community as a journalist trying to push the African-Americans to fight for their rights and to fight against the pressure of the white southerner. Wells, in 1892, decided to write Southern Horrors in which she described the horrors of lynchings and at the same time gave voice to the helpless black people.
- Gli Spot Elettorali nelle Campagne Presidenziali Americane: Forme, Immagini, Strategie, Torino, Otto Editore, 2011, pp. 246.
In a media-saturated environment in which news, opinions, and entertainment surround us all day on our television sets, computers, and cell phones, the political ad remains the one area where presidential candidates have complete control over their images. Political commercials use all the tools of fiction filmmaking, including script, visuals, editing, and performance, to distill a candidate’s major campaign themes into a few powerful images. Ads elicit emotional reactions, inspiring support for a candidate or raising doubts about his opponent. While commercials reflect the styles and techniques of the times in which they were made, the fundamental strategies and messages have tended to remain the same over the years. This research analyzes the political ads realized for TV and the Internet by the official campaigns of the four main candidates of the 2008 American primaries and presidential elections and the TV spots released by the political action committees (PACs).
- con Fabrizio Tonello, “Le elezioni di medio termine”, in Acoma. Rivista Internazionale di Studi Nord-Americani, 1/2011, pp. 9–18.
The outcome of the 2010 congressional elections confirmed the expected political realignment. The Republicans won control of the House of Representatives, having gained 64 seats and surpassing the 52 it won when Bill Clinton took a midterms drubbing in 1994. Democrats held enough seats to keep the Senate but failed to make any pick-ups and lost six seats. 54 Tea Party candidates will be heading to Washington DC: alongside new members of the House of Representatives, Marc Rubio in Florida, Rand Paul in Kentucky and Mike Lee in Utah will be joining ultra-conservative Jim DeMint of South Carolina in the Senate. Republicans also won 8 governors in states that were administered by Democrats.
- “Uno Studio sulle Presidenziali Americane: L’Economia Conta?”, in Historia Magistra, 9/2012, pp. 41–56.
The economy matters. This is one of the dogmas taught us by those who have studied the history of the American presidential elections. It is widely believed that the higher the unemployment rate is in November 2012, the more difficult it will be for Obama to gain re-election for a second term. But is this collective perception of the influence of economic data on individual electoral behaviour confirmed by statistical analysis of the history of presidential elections? This study shows that the most commonly used economic indicators are poor predictors of election outcomes, and also that variation in the approval rating of the incumbent president is a variable independent from the real economic data.
- “La rielezione di Obama. Un’analisi del voto presidenziale 2012”, in Quaderni dell’Osservatorio Elettorale, 68/2013, pp. 67–103.
This article analyzes the 2012 American Presidential election. It is divided into five sections. The first one is focused on data and numbers of the electoral result. The second reflects upon the nature of the Electoral College. The third section examines in depth the vote of women and minorities, which are the two factors that mostly contributed to Barack Obama’s re-election. Then, there is a section that scrutinises the electoral campaign, describing the issues, the candidates’ strategy and the media coverage received by Obama and Mitt Romney. The fifth part concerns the two candidates’ fundraising and expenses. Finally, we resume the previous analyses and we formulate the hypothesis that a new electoral bloc is currently under formation: the idea is that there is a political realignment that is going to favour the Democratic Party.
- “I risultati delle elezioni per il rinnovo del Congresso. Le variabili pre-elettorali e la polarizzazione ideologica del nuovo parlamento”, in Acoma. Rivista Internazionale di Studi Nord-Americani, 2013, pp. 55–66.
Democrats are clear winners of the 2012 elections: they won the Presidency, they have more seats in the Senate and they reduced their gap in the House. The reasons for this satisfaction have to be interpreted in light of the negative opinion polls that were released in the months prior to the elections and because of the redistricting, which was mostly controlled by the Republicans. The 113th Congress is the most racial and ethnic diverse ever, but the representation of the minorities is not in direct ratio to the population yet. On the conservative side, Tea Party members performed very well and it is possible to predict that the new parliament will be again highly radicalized.
- “La mascolinità fascista e la repressione della sua devianza: l’originalità della Venezia Giulia” in Acta Histriae, vol. 20, 2012, pp. 351–366.
This paper suggests an approach to the masculinity as an idealized representation in contrast with the stereotypical representation of the homosexuality as the typical opposite of virility. We based our approach on the thesis of George Mosse, concerning the role of the ideal type and anti-type during the nation building process between the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Thanks to new evidences derived from archive sources, which support a recent historiography about the relation between the idea of masculinity and the fascist ideology, this paper proposes a general scheme about the idea of masculinity in a specific area. This study considered the area of the former “Venezia Giulia”, a region at the center of a conflictual nation building process. Previously named “Litorale Austriaco”, the current “Venezia Giulia” assumed this denomination after First World War. At the same time homosexuality became legal; but the repression was continuing in other manner. This paper try to propose the new approach that Italian Kingdom used against homosexuality.
- Tesi di Laurea Magistrale (2012): L’icona di Ronald Reagan. La costruzione di un presidente, Università degli Studi di Roma Tre, Facoltà di Scienze Politiche e Relazioni Internazionali, Tutor: Daniele Fiorentino, Cotutor: Giordana Pulcini.
- “Il ruolo della Teoria dei Giochi nel neorealismo strategico di Thomas C. Schelling”, in Eunomia, Rivista Semestrale del Corso di Laurea in Scienze Politiche e delle Relazioni Internazionali, Università del Salento, 1/2012, pp. 243–265, http://siba-ese.unisalento.it/index.php/eunomia/article/view/12245/10955.
Nowadays in the world there are a lot of game theory fans among politicians, economists, mathematicians and psychologists: also a “pure” economist like Thomas C. Schelling was charmed by game theory and in 1994 his studies, shared with Robert Aumann, led him to win the Nobel Prize for Economics. His masterpiece, The Strategy of Conflict, published in 1960, was the first study in the world about strategic behavior and is considered now as one of the most important books that influenced Western culture after 1945. With The Strategy of Conflict Schelling inaugurated a new stream of international relations known as “strategic neorealism”. In this essay, that explains the link between international relations and maths, there is a reflection about Cold War and nuclear deterrence: the study of game theory highlights how weapons of mass destruction (this is the paradox of the atomic age) avoided, at the same time, the nuclear destruction of the planet.
- La nostra parte per noi stessi. I medici afro-americani tra razzismo, politica e riforme sanitarie (1945–1968), Milano, FrancoAngeli, 2012, pp. 432.
The National Medical Association (N.M.A.), the organization of African-American physicians, was born in 1895 from the American Medical Association’s refusal to accept black professionals in its ranks. The N.M.A. had a dual identity: it was both a professional group and a racial organization; consequently, black physicians’ profiles resulted from a permanent negotiation between class and race demands. During the 1950s and the 1960s, among the frequent tensions produced by this ambiguity, the conflict around separation and integration was of special importance, representing a constant in the black medical community’s history during the post-war era. Furthermore, while the N.M.A. mostly supported progressive efforts for health care reforms, it was divided within its ranks on the federal role in health care.
Gradually the N.M.A.’s political role prevailed on professionals’ self-interest; during the 1960s, the N.M.A. evolved as a militant group, attracting progressive physicians of all races interested in health problems of black and underprivileged masses. Nevertheless, the association was not effective in criticizing the 1960s public policies’ categorial and residual approach, which created different kinds of recipients and undermined any idea of universalism.
- “In nome del cambiamento: la riforma sanitaria di Obama”, in Passato e Presente, a. XXIX (2011), n. 82, pp. 103–114.
Obama’s health care reform sets a tripartite policy: regulation of private insurers in the new market called “the Exchange”, mandated coverage for individuals and businesses, and broader public intervention in health care (especially through Medicaid and Medicare’s overhaul and subsidies). The meaning of Obama’s reform can be understood only taking into account the special history of health care in the United States: the privileged status conferred to private interests, the absence of an idea of social citizenship, the distinction between insurance and assistance in social policies, the market’s centrality, and the residual role of public policies have been fundamental in shaping the current reform.
- “Their Own Society. Razza, classe e politica tra i medici afro-americani”, in Contemporanea, a. XIV, n. 3, luglio 2011, pp. 421–455.
The National Medical Association, the organization of African-American physicians, was born in 1895 from the American medical association’s refusal to accept black professionals in the Southern states. In different phases, the association represented a kind of adaptation to segregation, a concrete means of resistance against racism in medicine and a separated organization (although not formally segregated). The NMA had a dual identity: it was both a professional group and a racial organization; consequently, black physicians’ profiles resulted from a permanent negotiation between class and race demands. The dual identity caused internal conflicts and originated contradictory attitudes towards social reforms which dealt with black masses’ welfare; consequently, the NMA was divided within its ranks on the federal role in health care, and until the second world war’s aftermath strongly opposed a public health insurance. Gradually the NMA political role prevailed on professionals’ self-interest; during the 1960s, the NMA evolved as a militant group, attracting progressive physicians of all races interested in health problems of black and underprivileged masses.
- “‘Boicottare le Olimpiadi del Gulag’. I diritti umani e la campagna contro le Olimpiadi di Mosca”, in Ricerche di Storia Politica, 1/2013, pp. 3–24.
In the four-year period leading up to the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games, a growing controversy developed in the United States and to a lesser extent in many Western countries on the appropriateness of having the Olympics in Moscow, given the blatant violations of human rights and the repression of political dissent. The article intertwines Cold War history, the rise of human rights in international relations during the Seventies and the history of the Olympic movement. It argues that the Olympic movement was an important field for the new dialogue then promoted between the United States and the Soviet Union, as well as a tool to criticize and oppose the bipolar dialogue. In its conclusions, the article suggests that the controversy contributed to Carter’s campaign to use the Olympic boycott to punish the Soviets for their aggression against Afghanistan.
- Tra Diritti Umani e distensione. L’Amministrazione Carter e il dissenso in URSS, Milano, FrancoAngeli, 2013, pp. 256.
The book concentrates on Jimmy Carter’s human rights policy toward the Soviet Union. It argues that an ambiguous political consensus shaped the rise of American foreign policy since the early Seventies: for conservatives, human rights were meant to challenge the Soviet Union; for liberals, they were a tool to go beyond the Cold War dichotomies. Once in office, Carter tried to operate a synthesis between the two different perceptions. Since his early months in office, he tried to promote his human rights agenda through open diplomacy with the Soviets, in order to placate domestic conservative critics. Such a choice proved nevertheless unacceptable for the Soviets and jeopardized Carter’s attempt to revive détente. Soviet reactions forced the administration to modify its approach – which shifted from open to quiet diplomacy – and created broad room for domestic criticism, coming from liberals and conservatives alike.