'One Man Alone'? A Longue Durée Approach to Italy's Foreign Policy under Berlusconi
Title: 'One Man Alone'? A Longue Durée Approach to Italy's Foreign Policy under Berlusconi
Author: BRIGHI, Elisabetta
Citation: Government and Opposition, 2006, 41, 2, 278-297
By adopting a longue durée approach this paper aims to move the debate on Italy's foreign policy under the leadership of Silvio Berlusconi beyond the presentism and personalization currently dominating it. It argues firstly that the equation of Italian foreign policy with Berlusconi irresistible as it may be does not ultimately hold, and secondly that Berlusconi's 'new course' in foreign policy has to be put in a broader context. A more historically informed reading of the subject can on the one hand confer meaning and substance to what otherwise could appear to be a supremely ephemeral foreign policy, and on the other help illuminate its current trajectory and future implications. Far from being the product of 'one man alone' and his surreal quirks, the recent change in Italy's foreign policy results from a particular dialectic interplay between structural and contingent developments, which have come to intersect at this particular time
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