• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The weakness of the liberal state in Italy in 1919 was mainly caused by WW1. How far do you agree?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐The weakness of the liberal state in 1919 was mainly caused by ww1. How far do you agree? The liberal state in Italy had many weaknesses and faced many problems in 1919. Many were caused by WW1 such as, social, political and economic issues, several existed before the war such as the weaknesses of the political system already in place and the dividing legacy of unification. However these problems came about, their effects became apparent in the 1919 Liberal Party elections, where they were a serious minority and their power over Italy was being threatened. The first of many problems caused by WW1 was that it worsened political divisions that existed in Italy. The division was between the nationalists, the socialists the Pope and Catholics. The socialists were very against the war. Workers were forced under strict military discipline in factories and suffered poor conditions there, including long hours and low pay. When the war ended the discipline ended with it, bringing a wave of angry strikers, and the socialist party members rose from 50,000 to 200,000 from 1914 to 1919. ...read more.

Middle

In total, 650000 soldiers were killed and almost 1 million were wounded. The army suffered humiliating defeat at the Battle of Caporetto, but the soldiers got blamed for not being patriotic enough, which only increased the resentment further. The army consequently blamed the weak government for its failings. Moreover, when the soldiers returned they were greeted with high unemployment, while learning of industrialists who had manipulated the war to make them richer, and peasants whose positions had improved due to the increase in the demand for weaponry etc. (industry). These social divides led to increased resentment towards the liberal state, which now secured a weak and powerless government. Furthermore the war had a significant effect on the economy. During the war, there was mass inflation, where wholesale prices increased by 400%. While this was happening real wages not only could not keep up with inflation, but in fact decreased by 25% between 1915 and 1918. This led to ordinary people not being able to afford consumer goods. ...read more.

Conclusion

The government was made up only of Piedmonts superiority, so was not a true representation of the will of the population and was not a true democracy. As a result, resentment built towards the new liberal government. Furthermore, only 2% of the Italian population could vote, and these were wealthy middle class citizens, so peasants and the working class had little say in politics and therefore felt excluded. The liberal government had already established an ineffective and corrupt political system before the war even began. In conclusion I think that the weaknesses of the liberal state were mainly caused by WW1, this is because firstly, the decision to go to war was not unanimous; it was only decided by a few politicians, without consulting the population or even parliament. It therefore didn?t have the support of the majority of people. Secondly the war not only created economic problems, it also worsened those that already existed in Italy. These problems may have been resolved if the war had not occurred. The war only highlighted the incompetence and weaknesses of the liberal state. How far do you agree that the political elite (liberal politicians, king) were responsible for Mussolini?s appointment as Prime Minister in 1922? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Modern European History, 1789-1945 essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Was it the policies pursued by Henry VIII that caused "the mid-Tudor crisis"?

    4 star(s)

    There was also, as Guy perceives, a shift towards national finance. Although the period 1552-8 is still described as one of crisis, it must be remembered that there were some productive reforms, and the situation did not decline. The older generation of historians such as Pollard who see government as

  2. Propaganda in WW1

    common form of entertainment and socialisation and formed a great medium for conveying these pro war messages. Many governments recognised this and often used music as an effective means for inspiring pride, patriotism in the citizens in order to gain manpower, homeland support, funds and resources to sustain their military campaign.

  1. How far does the North South divide in Italy explain the weaknesses of the ...

    This great regional disparity completely undermined the fundamental aim of the Liberals, to unite Italy. Constitutionally, Italy may have been recognised as a new and unified state but in reality it was a divided nation. In addition, these regional differences diminished the political efficiency of a united Italy.

  2. How Secure was Liberal Italy in 1914?

    This showed that there was more care for the average Italian workers, and that the old days where employers could treat their employees pretty much how they wanted were dying out. Standards were being introduced, there was backing for those who were being unfairly treated, and probably most of all

  1. Causes of WWI and the roles of Women before WW1

    This introduction led to the slaughter of thousands of troops due to the fact that generals maintained the above-mentioned belief in regards to the war. This can be seen in Germany?s Schlieffen Plan. It was Germany?s plan to knock-out France within six weeks which was the time that Russia would need to mobilize its troops and then move eastward.

  2. Evaluate the significance of the use of tanks had in the outcome of WW1

    They would ?...tie several grenades together and make them explode beneath the tanks.?[12] They had now found methods to counter-attack. Some Historians criticised Haig for throwing away the tanks psychological effect on the battlefield by using them prematurely, therefore, allowing the enemy to detect its weaknesses.

  1. How far does the North-South divide in Italy explain the weakness of the Liberal ...

    the government, it explains the reasons why politicians turned to the concept of Transformismo, thus exposing the instability in the Italian government; even successful politicians such as Giolitti were forced to r ely on bribery in order to gain a position in office, clearly showing that the Liberal State?s key

  2. In the years before WW1, Germany was progressing towards an effective parliamentary democracy. Do ...

    The idea of the Reichstag having an active role is perhaps demonstrated by the Daily Telegraph Affair in 1908 when it openly criticised the Kaiser, thus prompting the Kaiser to take a step back from politics. This, coupled with the fact that the Reichstag was becoming increasingly dominated by the

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work