La Difesa della Razza: Scienza, Documentazione, Polemica. Year I, no. 1 (5 August 1938) through Year VI, no. 16 (20 June 1943) (all published)
A complete run consisting of 118 issues (each issue approx. 50 pp., all bound in 5 volumes), published bi-weekly, of the virulently racist and propagandistic journal meant to reinforce racial stereotypes pertaining to Jews, Gypsies, colonial Africans, Asians, and other non-Aryan ethnic groups as justification for Fascist governmental policies and practices, with hundreds of articles by "experts" on anthropology, psychology, biology, sociology, history, and politics, profusely illustrated throughout after photographs, caricatures, drawings, and photomontages, often showing non-Italians and non-Aryans in grotesque and distorted views. 4to. Later cloth, some covers somewhat rubbed and chipped, all orig. wrpps. covers bound in. Rome (Tumminelli) 1938-1943. A complete run, including the almost impossible to obtain final issue, in generally remarkably fine condition of one of the most important and emblematic Italian periodicals published during the Fascist era. Intended as a defense of the Italian race against those deemed inferior, corrupt and polluted, and published with the full financial and political support of the Mussolini cabal, the journal was a semi-official voice of the Fascist regime and drew on many of the best-known figures from the Italian right of the time. Directed by Telesio Interlandi, contributors included Guido Landra (author of the Manifesto of Race), Lidio Cipriani (professor of anthropology at the University of Florence), Leo Franzi (of the pediatric clinic at the University of Milan), Marcello Ricci (professor of zoology in Rome), and Lino Businco (professor of pathology at the University of Rome). Widely distributed, the extent of its effect on the Italian public remains disputed: its exaggerated caricatures of Jews, Gypsies, Africans, mestizo, the mentally ill, and physically impaired helped create a climate of intense mistrust and aversion which enabled the regime to act without hindrance, but it is also argued that there is evidence that some people thought the ideas too extremist and unconvincing. A fascinating and important work shedding light onto the mechanism of Fascism and racism. (Inventory #: 45299)
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