Politics And Symbols / Edition 1

Politics And Symbols / Edition 1

by David I. Kertzer
     
 

ISBN-10: 0300077246

ISBN-13: 9780300077247

Pub. Date: 10/11/1998

Publisher: Yale University Press

In the wake of the fall of the Berlin wall, and with the Communist regimes of Eastern Europe collapsing, Italian Communist Party (PCI) head Achille Occhetto shocked his party in 1989 by insisting that the PCI jettison its old name and become something new. This dramatic book tells of the ensuing struggle within the PCI, which at the time was Italy's second-largest…  See more details below

Overview

In the wake of the fall of the Berlin wall, and with the Communist regimes of Eastern Europe collapsing, Italian Communist Party (PCI) head Achille Occhetto shocked his party in 1989 by insisting that the PCI jettison its old name and become something new. This dramatic book tells of the ensuing struggle within the PCI, which at the time was Italy's second-largest party and the most powerful Communist party in the West. David I. Kertzer's vivid depiction of the conflict brings to life the tactics that party factions employed and the anguish of party members for whom Communism was the core of their identity. Kertzer also tells a larger story from an anthropologist's perspective: the story of the importance of symbols, myths, and rituals in modern politics.

Those who seek dramatic political change, Kertzer contends, must remake history. He recounts how those who succeeded in transforming the PCI into the new Democratic Party of the Left effectively used ritual and manipulated political symbols. Bringing the views of Antonio Gramsci, Pierre Bourdieu, Michel Foucault, and other political thinkers into his discussion, Kertzer explores theoretical issues involving the relation between symbolism and political power, concluding that modern politics is fundamentally a struggle over symbols and the redefinition of history.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300077247
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
10/11/1998
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.51(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Ch. 1Naming Names1
Ch. 2Making Communist History16
Ch. 3Saviors and Conspirators41
Ch. 4What's in a Name?64
Ch. 5Battling over the Past to Change the Future84
Ch. 6Alternative Histories108
Ch. 7The Ritual Struggle123
Ch. 8On the Power of Symbols and the Weight of History153
Notes173
Bibliography193
Index203

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