This chapter observes and relocates the role of the arts in Mazzini's political reflections, seeing in it a kind of prelude to the aesthetic dimension of politics generally explored in the 20th century. Through a close analysis of his large output of literary and musical criticism (1826–44), it shows how the language of the arts, and especially drama as ‘the social art par excellence’, was considered by the Italian thinker to be the main means to communicate to the public – in a forceful and emotional way – political and national goals. Mazzini believed that, in the specific case of Italy, opera, with its active power to move, thrill, and provoke enthusiasm in Italian theatres, could play a crucial political role.
Keywords: arts; literary criticism; musical criticism; opera
Chapter. 7925 words.
Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)
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