How Far Were Giolitti's Attempts to Stabilize the Government Responsible for Its Problems
Submitted By franklink
How far were Giolitti’s attempts to stabilise the government responsible for its problems?
Giolitti attempts to stabilised the government were many. However most ended with more problems than were solved through the process. Giolitti was responsible for many reforms such as the rise in wages and the allowance of a wider range of people to vote. He also came up with the process of Trasformismo to achieve Risorgimento. But all of these attempts to stabilise the government were individually judged by the problems they led to instead.
Many attempts to stabilise the Italian government were made when Giolitti was in power, one of which was his social reforms. These were made in attempt to gain popularity with the mass of Italian people however most of his reforms impacted certain people in a negative way. For example Giolitti extended the vote for government to any man over the age of 30. Although this was good for males over 30, women were still unhappy as they couldn’t vote, this lost the government popularity. Another reform put in place was a 25% rise in wages, this made workers happy but the government lost popularity due to the resentment of employers having to pay higher wages for the same jobs. This caused the government problems as they lost a lot of popularity due to reforms Giolitti had made. The reforms were unpopular due to the divide between the North and the South, they widened the economic gulf between them.
Another attempt Giolitti made to stabilise the government was through Trasformismo. This was the political process to achieve Risorgimento. Risorgimento was the idea of restoring Italy to its former strength. The aims were to create a flexible, centrist of coalition governments which isolated the extremes of the left and right after the unification. However Trasformismo fed into the debates that the Italian parliamentary system was failing and weak it ultimately became associated with corruption. Although many intentions were noble, due to the nature of the liberal political system it did not develop as a structured party initiated in 1883.
The politicians involved in Trasformismo were the middle class elite, and were alienated from the everyday Italian. Due to the nature of the political system, the politicians ended up focusing on selfish gains. The liberals did not develop as a structured party under Giolitti, many Italians identified with the Catholic religion than they did with the Italian nation state. This was because the Pope forbade Catholics to vote in elections owing to the religious pluralism of the liberal government. On the other hand there was a major industrial expansion in the North and although the 1890s saw a major industrial expansion, this was confined to the North and led to a more severe divide between the North and the South. The way the liberal politicians were seen as corrupt with the frequent changes of government.
Giolitti was prime minister of Italy a total of 5 times throughout his time. He was the centre of the government for so long that he mastered the art of manipulation to achieve majorities in parliament. He is seen as politically clever with his technique of resining at the opportune moment and letting someone else deal with an uprising or strike. After it is dealt with he returned to power to bask in the success of the former prime minister, then again when an issue became apparent he resigned and let his successor deal with it. This created a very unstable government that led to problems for Giolitti. Even though Giolitti did many of these things to strengthen the government so he did not have to deal with the crisis, the corruption of the constant changing leaders led to the government having voting problems ultimately.
Overall, although many of Giolitti’s changes worked well for Italy, they all played a part in the problems for the government. Most noticeable was the confliction with the church over Trasformismo. This created unrest between the people, the church and the government and although all factors paid a part, this was the main factor in the governments instability due to the actions of Giolitti.