Red Week (Italy)

Red Week was the name given to a week of unrest which occurred in June, 1914. Over these seven days, Italy saw widespread rioting and large-scale strikes throughout the Italian provinces of Romagna and the Marche.[1]

Map showing regions affected by the Red Week riots: Emilia-Romagna, and Marche (below)

Origins of the 'Red Week'

The rioters were protesting in response to a series of reforms introduced in 1914 initiated by Prime Minister Giovanni Giolitti which aimed to 'consume' the working class into Italy's liberal system. Despite a widening of suffrage and a change in the government's policies concerning industrial disputes (in favour of workers), a general strike was called in support of large demonstrations in many major industrialised towns, which in turn had been caused by the shooting of three socialist protesters. However, due to the nature of the Italian Socialist Party (PSI), the strike was uncoordinated and rioters were headed off by government troops before any real harm could be done.

The Effects

The Red Week frightened the lower middle classes, and proved that Italy's problems of unification were more than just the growing pains of a young nation. Italy's Wars of Unification (Benito Mussolini's political journal Avanti! urged that more drastic measures be taken against the Italian government, and Italy's joining of the First World War subsequent to the Red Week gave huge credence to Mussolini's rhetoric against the sycophantic government, which had presented itself as an easy target for its entry into the Great War.

References

  1. ^ "Red Week" Encyclopaedia Britannica, Accessed 2 February 2015. (http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/494603/Red-Week)

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.