How far is nationalism a key facet of fascism and nationalist socialism?

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How far is nationalism a key facet of fascism and national socialism?
When fascism and national socialism, or Nazism, is discussed, it is frequently discussed that
nationalism is a key facet of both ideologies. Both forms emphasise the importance of the nation and
use nationalism to unite the citizens in support for the nation and therefore the ideology. When
observing fascism and national socialism, however, the two ideologies can get easily confused as
they have similar tendencies. Therefore, fascism is to be looked at in terms of Italy between 1922
and 1943, Spain under General Franco, and Chile in the 1970s. On the other hand, national socialism
manifests itself distinctly in the form of Nazi Germany between 1933 and 1945. The fact that national
socialism adopts a different form to the manifestations of fascism suggests distinct differences in the
ideologies and therefore the extent of which nationalism itself is a key fact of each; nationalism is
emphasised more in national socialism than in fascism.
Fascism was developed by Benito Mussolini as branch of romantic nationalism, in which the people of
Italy could unify behind. To do this, it created myths based on the nation, seen through Romanitia, a
myth developed by Mussolini regarding the Roman Empire and the national pride that could unite the
people of Italy. This is observed by Matthew N. Lyons, who argues fascism "celebrates the nation or
the race as an organic community transcending all other loyalties. It emphasizes a myth of national or
racial rebirth after a period of decline or destruction". This notion of romanticism is also evidenced in
manifestations of national socialism. Hitler is noted as having saying "I use emotion for the many and
reserve reason for the few". Furthermore, the emphasis on the "volk" , or people, demonstrates
how much of the national socialist ideology is centred on the people who make a nation ­ a principle
of romantic nationalism. This emphasis on emotion is a core tenet of romantic nationalism, therefore
suggesting that nationalism is a key facet of fascism and national socialism.
One distinction between fascism and nationalism socialism is with regards to racialism. Fascism was
not necessarily racialist or anti-Semitic; indeed in Italy Jews were members of the Fascist Party and
anti-Semitic policies were not pursued until Mussolini developed racialist policies until he developed
a relationship with the national socialist, Hitler. The national socialist form of racialism was based in
fervent nationalism, with the concept of the biological hierarchy of races, playing the 'Aryan'
Germanic race at the top. According to Barbara Miller Lane, Rosenberg was racialist insofar as he
regarded "anti-Semitism as overwhelmingly biological... the Jews were a distinct race, from whose
racial characteristics held religious, political, and cultural consequences". Racialism is not, however,
necessarily a strand of nationalism. Liberal nationalism, conservative nationalism and socialist
nationalism are three strands of nationalism that are not racialist in their view. The reason why such
racialism exhibits nationalism to be a key facet of national socialism is due to the fact that national
socialism views the citizenship of a nation as ethnic, not voluntary, and therefore their racialist
policies are also based on nationalistic views.
In addition to this, the centre of both ideologies is different. For fascists, the core value is the state,
as seen through the well-cited quote from Benito Mussolini: "All within the state, nothing outside the
state, nothing against the state." This was the founding principle of fascism and led to the
nationalisation of some businesses, although Fascist Italy tended to follow the right-wing route of the
free market. The economic `Third Way', or corporatism, also reflects the ideology's core doctrine of
loyalty to the all-encompassing state, with all businesses and trade unions being infiltrated by agents

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This exhibits fascism to draw on some of the values, such as the dominance of the state,
as a socialist form of nationalism. National socialism, on the other hand, does not incorporate such
forms of socialism and, as previously discussed, the core value of the ideology is an emphasis on race
rather than the state. Therefore, whilst national socialism does incorporate some elements of
socialist nationalism, its main focus is on expansionist and racialist fascism.…read more


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