Trump and Mussolini: Images, Fake News, and Mass Media as Weapons in the Hands of Two Populists compares two historic men of power and influence, Donald Trump and Benito Mussolini, to analyze the commonality of practices and mannerisms between the two. From rhetoric to body language, to their control over oral and written communication and analogous power strategies, they both possess an unusual talent for new technologies which they utilize to their advantage in unique moments in history. Mussolini lived at the beginning of mass society, Trump at the height of social media, both controversial leaders finding means to utilize these periods of time and the tools surrounding them to further their own agendas and influence society, culture, and authority. The authors examine a plethora of topics and themes such as outward personalities and consuming charisma, means and tools of communication and propaganda, and treatment of women, just to name a few, in order to define the relationship and similarities between these two controversial figures.
This book was written before the Capitol Hill assault on January 6th 2021. Mussolini in November 1922 in front of the Parliament said: “I could have made a bivouac of this gloomy gray hall: I could have shut down the Parliament and formed a Government exclusively of Fascists; I could have done so, but I did not wish to do so, at least not at this moment.” Trump, however never said anything like this, but indeed, tried to do it.
Anna Camaiti Hostert, PhD, is a writer and philosopher in the field of political science and visual studies.
Enzo Antonio Cicchino is a documentarist and author of several history programs on fascism for the Italian National Public Broadcast (RAI-Radiotelevisione Italiana).
Preface by Anthony Julian Tamburri
Introduction: Similarities in the Trump and Mussolini Eras
Chapter I: Manipulating Information
Chapter II: The Climb: A New Narrative
Chapter III: Protean Leaderships
Chapter IV: Mechanisms of Consensus and Democracy
Chapter V: Ideology as a Prop
Chapter VI: Achieving Internal Consensus
Chapter VII: Geopolitics
Chapter VIII: The Women
Interview with Ambassador Robert J. Callahan
Interview with Sociologist Franco Ferraotti