How Significant Was Mazzini in the Growth of Opposition to Autocratic and Foreign Rule in Italy in the Years 1831–49? (30)

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How significant was Mazzini in the growth of opposition to autocratic and foreign rule in Italy in the years 1831–49? (30) Mazzini was a republican nationalist who had a significant effect in the growth of anti-autocratic feeling in Italy. He had radical aims for the future of Italy and he envisioned unification. He was the first leader to indoctrinate in the minds of Italians a vision of political unification. Mazzini created the Young Italy society after the 1831 revolutions. Young Italy helped spread opposition to the autocratic nature of the Italian rulers. It was established to create a republican nation-state. Although ‘Young Italy’ was still a small-scale, secret nationalist society, its effect on Italian attitudes was large, speaking in the long-term. Similar to the Carbonari groups, it was planned as a youth movement for the whole peninsula so had the potential to gain widespread and active support. It is worthwhile knowing that he was the father of nationalism and inspired Giuseppe Garibaldi’s nationalistic fervour. It was the genius of Garibaldi which catalysed unification in 1866. Garibaldi – inspired by Mazzini – could not have led his 1000 troops to the south of Italy in 1866 without Mazzinian teachings so deeply entrenched into him since being part of Young Italy. Mazzini was a prolific publicist continually publishing letters and articles and was feted by many European liberals. Mazzini’s ideas encouraged several attempted invasions in the years 1833-48 and in 1849 Mazzini was able to take advantage of the Pope’s flight from Rome to declare a Roman Republic. This shows that Mazzini had a profound effect in accelerating the growth of autocracy and the nature of foreign intervention by exercising his opportunism in favourable conditions. He did so to cater to his own desires for a unified Italy and to fulfil the aims of Young Italy. Mazzini had
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