Picturing the Other: Targets of Delegitimization across Time

  • Chiara Volpato Università di Milano-Bicocca
  • Federica Durante Università di Milano-Bicocca
  • Alessandro Gabbiadini Univesità di Milano-Bicocca
  • Luca Andrighetto Università di Milano-Bicocca
  • Silvia Mari Università di Milano-Bicocca


Italian Fascist propaganda was compared with contemporary right-wing material to explore how political propaganda depicts specific target groups in different historical periods. Taking the theory of delegitimization as the theoretical framework, we analyzed visual images concerning despised social groups used by the Fascist regime and current images of contemporary targets of social resentment used by Lega Nord (currently part of the governing coalition). Images of Jewish and Black people published in the Fascist magazine La Difesa della Razza were classified according to eight delegitimizing strategies, as were images of immigrants used on Lega Nord propaganda posters. Although the target group has changed, six of the eight strategies of delegitimization were used in both periods. In most cases, overlap was found in the way target groups were portrayed in the past and in the present.

Author Biographies

Chiara Volpato, Università di Milano-Bicocca

Full Professor

Department of Psychology

Federica Durante, Università di Milano-Bicocca

Assistant Professor (Lecturer)

Department of Psychology

Alessandro Gabbiadini, Univesità di Milano-Bicocca

PhD Student

QUA_SI Department

Luca Andrighetto, Università di Milano-Bicocca

Post-Doc Student

Department of Psychology

Silvia Mari, Università di Milano-Bicocca

Assistant Professor (Lecturer)

Department of Psychology

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