Filippo Turati

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Turati, Filippo


Born Nov. 27, 1857, in Canzo, Como; died Mar. 30,1932, in Paris. Italian political figure, publicist, and ideologist of reformism.

Turati came to the labor movement from the radical-left Democratic Union. In 1890–91, together with A. Kuliscioff, he founded the journal Critica sociale. In 1892 he helped found the Italian Workers’ Party, which became the Italian Socialist Party (ISP) in 1895. The creation of the ISP represented a victory over anarchist and factionalist trends in the Italian labor movement. Turati called for unification of the workers’ and democratic movements in the struggle against the Crispi dictatorship.

From 1896 to 1926, Turati was a deputy to parliament and leader of the ISP’s bloc in parliament. He rejected revolutionary forms and methods of fighting for socialism and emphasized the struggle for social and political reforms. He relied upon parliamentary methods to achieve goals and advocated agreements and cooperation with the liberal bourgeoisie as a party tactic.

In foreign policy, Turati opposed Italian participation in the Italo-Turkish War of 1911–12 and World War I. Within the ISP, he struggled against the party’s Maximalist wing (seeMAXIMALISTS). Failing to grasp the historical significance of the Great October Socialist Revolution in Russia, Turati attributed the revolution’s victory to specifically Russian conditions and regarded the establishment of the dictatorship of the proletariat as inapplicable to Italy. After the decision of the ISP in 1919 to join the Third International, Turati participated in the formation of the right-re formist Socialist Unity Party in 1922. After the Fascists seized power in 1922, Turati emigrated to France, where he continued his anti-Fascist work.

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Filippo Turati, the dominant socialist figure of his generation, took time to address the problem in Critica Sociale.
(1) Filippo Turati and Costantino Lazzari, who represented the main wings of the socialist party at Genoa in 1892, were both born in 1857; Amadeo Bordiga was born in 1889, Antonio Gramsci in 1891, Angelo Tasca in 1892.
(2) Faced with the new threat of "Bolshevism," Costantino Lazzari, party secretary and maximalist leader, recognized what had united him with his prewar rival, Filippo Turati. In arguing against changes in the constituent document of the P.S.I.
683; Spencer Di Scala, Dilemmas of Italian Socialism: The Politics of Filippo Turati (Amherst, 1980), pp.