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What does fascist mean?
A fascist is someone who supports or promotes fascism—a system of government led by a dictator who typically rules by forcefully and often violently suppressing opposition and criticism, controlling all industry and commerce, and promoting nationalism and often racism.
The words fascist and fascism are sometimes capitalized, especially when they specifically refer to the dictatorship of Benito Mussolini in Italy from 1922 to 1943, or authoritarian systems similar to his, including those of Adolf Hitler in Germany and Francisco Franco in Spain.
Fascism can also refer to an ideology based on this form of rule, or to the use of its methods. More broadly, fascism is used to refer to any ideology or movement seen as authoritarian, nationalistic, and extremely right wing, especially when fundamentally opposed to democracy and liberalism.
The term fascist can be a noun referring generally to someone who has such views, or, more specifically, to a member of such a government or movement. Fascist can also be used as an adjective describing something involving or promoting fascism.
Apart from their literal (and often capitalized) use to refer to the regime of Mussolini, the words fascism and fascist are typically used negatively as a criticism of such practices and ideologies—fascists typically avoid calling themselves fascists due to the negative history associated with the terms.
That history includes the rise of fascism in the 1920s and ’30s, the Holocaust perpetrated by Hitler and the Nazis, and other atrocities and oppression committed under fascist regimes. Interest in the history of fascism and the word itself has increased in the 21st century, along with a global rise of nationalism and movements associated with fascism.
Where does fascist come from?
The first records of the word fascist in English come from right before the 1920s. It comes from the Italian fascista, from fascio, meaning “political group.” Mussolini formed these small political groups into a political party, Partito Nazionale Fascista—the National Fascist Party. Fascist and the Italian fascio ultimately derive from the Latin fascis, meaning “bundle” (the plural form is fasces). In ancient Rome, fasces consisted of a bundle of rods with an axe blade sticking out. This was used as a symbol of a government official’s power. The Italian fascists brought back the fasces as a symbol of their brand of nationalism, which became known as fascism. The suffix -ism indicates a doctrine or set of principles, and -ist indicates a person who adheres to this doctrine or principles.
As an ideology, fascism typically centers around extreme nationalism and an opposition to democracy and liberalism. In practice, fascism revolves around a ruler who uses absolute power to suppress the individual freedom of citizens, making everyone completely subject to the power of the state. To achieve this, fascism often uses violent methods for political ends. In the context of a fascist government, this often involves the use of the military against citizens.
Fascist leaders typically gain support by appealing to people’s nationalism and racism, especially by promoting suspicion or hatred of people that they label as foreigners or otherwise cast as illegitimate citizens—as Hitler did with the Jews in Germany. Such leaders often reinforce these themes among their followers with rallies and mass parades (developing what’s sometimes called a cult of personality).
Fascism is often considered a form of totalitarianism, in which the government controls almost every aspect of ordinary life. (Some left-wing forms of government, such as forms of communism, are also considered to be totalitarian.)
Today, the terms fascist and fascism are often applied in a general way to practices that resemble those of military dictatorships, especially when based on nationalism, racism, and authoritarian rule.
What does antifascist mean?
An antifascist is a person who actively opposes fascism. (Antifascism is active opposition to fascism). Antifascist can also be used as an adjective to describe such actions or opposition. The first antifascist groups were those opposed to the rule of Mussolini, but there have been many others since then. The term antifascist is the basis of the word Antifa, which typically refers to a movement that opposes fascism.
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What are some other forms related to fascist?
- fascistic (adjective)
- fascistically (adverb)
- antifascist (noun, adjective)
- profascist (noun, adjective)
- fascitize (verb)
- fascism (noun)
What are some words that share a root or word element with fascist?
What are some words that often get used in discussing fascist?
How is fascist used in real life?
The word fascist is used in both specific and general ways in the context of governments and ideologies based on fascism. As both an adjective and a noun, it’s typically used in a critical way due to the violence and racism associated with fascism.
“American fascist energies today are different from 1930s European fascism,” writes Sarah Churchwell. “But that doesn’t mean they’re not fascist, it means they’re not European and it’s not the 1930s.” https://t.co/kB0AUosyQE
— The New York Review of Books (@nybooks) June 23, 2020
Why did my grandfather choose to become a Fascist? He joined Mussolini’s party after returning from the front in WW1. I ask historian Gianluca Scroccu in my film ‘Fascism in the Family’. What was Fascism then and could it be resurfacing now?Details in thread #FascismInTheFamily pic.twitter.com/ofYHFBVPgE
— Barbara Serra (@BarbaraGSerra) June 27, 2020
someone should write something about how fascists use a shifting rhetorical focus to portray their enemies as both strong and weak at the same time. maybe put it in a list of other properties of fascist ideology idk
— Shaun (@shaun_vids) June 21, 2020
Example sentences from the Web for fascist
“Scratch a liberal, find a fascist every time,” Woods tweeted in April.How James Woods Became Obama’s Biggest Twitter Troll|Asawin Suebsaeng|December 31, 2014|DAILY BEAST
At the time, Valli was in Europe, married to a fascist type who was minor-order royalty.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days|David Freeman|December 13, 2014|DAILY BEAST
We had gone from late-Weimar period to the 1933-torchlight-parade stage of fascist takeover.From ISIS to Ebola, What Has Made Naomi Wolf So Paranoid?|Michael Moynihan|October 11, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The regime has, to date, never definitively weighed in on whether these troublesome critters had imperialist or fascist ties.Who Will Maduro Blame for Venezuela’s Blackout This Time?|Daniel Lansberg-Rodríguez|June 28, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The “fascist rule” Miller wrote about was the U.S. government—and his intended targets were broader than two police officers.
For the same purpose, the fascist state is organized at peace—to out-produce and under-sell its competitors.Proclaim Liberty!|Gilbert Seldes
It had happened in Burgos, in April of 1938, during a review of the 12th Division of the fascist army.
The Fascist "squads" were really the force of a State not yet born but on the way to being.
A man who marched with the men who put that fascist bullet through the throat of Uncle Carlos.
First of all, he didn't like the fact that there are fascist organizations here.Warren Commission (1 of 26): Hearings Vol. I (of 15)|The President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy