The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter Historical Context

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The character of Mick is so politically naive early in the novel that when she is defacing the wall of a house under construction she includes the name Mussolini along with the comic-strip crime fighter Dick Tracy and the inventor of light bulbs, phonographs and moving pictures, Thomas Edison. At that time in world history, Fascism had reached its height as a political power. The word itself was coined by Benito Mussolini during his rise to power in Italy after World War I ended in 1818—he defined fascism as "organized concentrated authoritarian democracy on a national basis," although most other sources would not forget to include the words "totalitarianism" and "authoritarianism" in their definition. Fascism is unlike Democracy because it gives the government control over all aspects of its citizens' lives; it is unlike Communism because it emphasizes the nation, and not the worker, as being the...

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This section contains 1,049 words
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The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.