Mazzini organized many revolutions in Italy, but because of his public notoriety was blamed for all of them, even those he had actively opposed. The revolutions all failed - partly due to poor planning, but also partly due to bad luck. It was hard to tell ahead of time which revolts would peter out almost before they began and which would somehow light the spark of popular resistance. That Mazzini tried again and again was not because he enjoyed making martyrs out of men, but because he believed in the unity of thought and action - if Italian patriotism was indeed favored by God, how could men of good conscience stand by and do nothing? They had to try. And, by trying, they inspired more people to believe in Italy. We’re not done with Mazzini - he still has a major role to play in the years to come. But, if he had died here, he would still be famous, as the man who made millions believe in Italy. Download Episode 21
In mid-March, 2014, Venetians overwhelmingly voted for secession from Italy in an unofficial, online referendum. Learn more about why this happened and what it means for Italy's future. Download News Flash - Venetian Secession
The stars of the show are about to come on stage. There are three of them, Giuseppe Mazzini, Giuseppe Garibaldi, and Count Cavour. They are larger than life in many ways. These three men were critical in defining what it means to be Italian. Each of them is so much more important to the story than simply a list of their actions. Their beliefs and values helped to shape a nation. Mazzini, sometimes called the beating heart of Italy, was the oldest of the three, and the first to become important to our story. This episode is the first of two specifically about Mazzini, as I can’t fit it all into a single episode. Download Episode 20
In the early 1820's most of Italy was still ruled by the same men who had squared off against Napoleon - Grand Duke Ferdinand in Tuscany, King Ferdinand in Naples, and Pope Pius VII in the Papal States. King Victor Emmanuel I had abdicated in 1821 and his brother Charles Felix was now king, but they were men cut from the same cloth, so Piedmont still had a decidedly pre-Napoleonic mindset. There will be a changing of the guard, and by 1831 all of these men will be dead and gone, replaced with new rulers who will be some of the key players in the Italian Unification. We're also going to see another wave of revolutions in that break out in 1831, and which will meet much the same fate as those in 1820 and 21. Download Episode 19
Benjamin and Adam are brothers, and are both in grad school studying theoretical chemistry. History is their hobby.