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History of Communism in Europe

Volume 8, 2017

The Other Half of Communism: Women's Outlook

Graziano Mamone
Pages 37-61
DOI: 10.5840/hce201783

The Big Contradiction. Feminism and Communism in the Magazine Lotta Continua. 1968-1978

A new feminist ideology can be outlined by examining the magazine “Lotta Continua”, official newspaper of the homonymous Italian extra-parliamentary group. Riots in factories and universities were closely reported in the magazine, which painted a society still affected by strong gender inequalities. Split between an opposition to official communism and the spontaneity of the working class conflict, women emerged from family isolation. The great achievements of the Italian feminist movement were reported according to the point of view of the dissident communism. While in Italy the feminist movement was on the rise, the organisation was approaching its end, also due to its conflict with feminist protests. This paper wants to re-construct the image and the representation of left-wing feminism, in a crucial moment for the history of Italian society and communism.