English en


This leaflet, published in the newspaper Il Messaggero on 23 May 1915, is titled ‘A noble manifesto of the Italian railway engineers’. It compares non-combatant citizens with soldiers, and is an appeal to the Italian people to use the army as a model to which the whole of society should conform. The goal was to create a disciplined and unified community based on obedience and the desire to march as one. This idea was shared by large numbers of intellectuals and politicians. Compliant citizens should accept, without reaction or resentment, all measures limiting their personal freedom. They should make themselves available to the ‘committees of civil preparation’, not withdraw deposits from the bank, and subscribe to state-issued loans. Everyone should minimise their needs, and resist hoarding consumer goods.