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Bakunin, Pezzica

Bakunin in Italy

Wandering all over Europe either to take part in an insurrection or to avoid arrest, in the 1860s Michail Bakunin has often sojourned in Italy. While he was not interested in its monuments or the beauty of the countryside, his main concern was to excite the imagination of the disenfranchised masses to establish a society of free and equal individuals. Yet, as he was hatching plots, Bakunin was also a keen observer of the contradictions that plagued the recently unified country: inefficient and abusive taxation, corrupted politicians, the stifling bureaucracy, the invasive role of the Catholic church... in short, Italy's enduring vices which remain unresolved to this day.

Lorenzo Pezzica is a historian and an archivist. He lives and works in Milan at the Centro studi libertari Archivio Giuseppe Pinelli, the Giangiacomo Feltrinelli Foundation and the Anna Kuliscioff Foundation. He has published numerous articles on historical topics.