Compare and Contrast Hitler and Mussolini's Domestic Policies

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Both Benito Mussolini (in power in Italy between 1922- 43) and Adolf Hitler (in power in Germany between 1933-45) were fascist leaders who were able to rise to power and establish single party states during the interwar period by exploiting feelings of national discontentment following the Versailles settlement. As rulers who had received widespread support based on their ability to express grand visions of future glory for their respective Italy and Germany, both Mussolini and Hitler relied upon social policy as a means of trying to impose their fascist ideologies on the population at large and to maintain support for their regimes. It could also be used as means of controlling the population and marginalizing opposition to fascist rule. However, in neither Mussolini’s Italy nor Hitler’s Germany were these bold aims fully realized in practice. This essay will examine and analyze key points of comparison and contrast between their domestic policies, while also evaluating how far each dictator was able to successfully achieve their goals in these areas. Ideology and general social aims: General fascist principles Nationalism and state centralism - nation as an organic community that needs strong leadership, a singular collective identity (i.e. “the German people”) and a will to wage war to keep the nation strong. National expansion in foreign policy - view of world based on belief that struggles of nations and races are a central feature of the world. Growth of empire and national expansion seen as proof of national strength and virility. Militarism and focusing of domestic society towards war as a key consequence of this foreign policy worldview Anti-individualism - individuals only important in terms of their contribution to the state and the nation. No human value or rights outside of the fascist state. This sacrificing of the individual to the nation
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