Italian Foreign Policy
The Statecraft of the Founders, 1870-1896
Federico Chabod

Translated by William McCuaig


Federico Chabod (1901-1960) was one of Italy's best-known historians, noted for his study of Italian history in a European context. This is the first English translation of his most important book. Although he carried out his extensive archival research for this work from 1936 until 1943, the fall of fascism and Chabod's active participation in the Resistance delayed its completion. When it was published in 1951, it was immediately hailed as a masterpiece.

Chabod intended to write a new kind of diplomatic history-- one in which political history is seen as part of a larger historical whole. He does not present a detailed chronological account of Italian foreign policy during the period studied, but rather the "moral and material" underpinnings of that policy. In fact, he crafts a highly developed portrait of an age, with the real subjects being the Italian state and society, the ruling class and political culture. This work offers readers a superb picture of post-Risorgimento Italy and an outstanding example of Chabod's historiographical method.

First published in 1996.