Different but the Same. Democracy and Constitution in the History of the Italian Communist Party (1944-1981)
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The Italian Communist Party has played a fundamental role in the liberation of Italy from Nazi-fascism, in the affirmation of Italian democracy and in the preparation of the Constitution. The particular bond of the PCI with the Soviet Union – an «iron bond» as it has been called – has at times created contradictions, specifically with regard to the Party’s attitude towards democratic institutions, which were considered as a necessary step towards a more advanced socialist society. The democratic and constitutional ambiguity of the PCI, its «duplicity» as it was called, is analyzed with particular attention to the early post-war years and to the changes that took place in the 1960s and 1970s, by reference to the defense of the Constitution, which has remained a strategic cornerstone of the «new party» (re)built in 1944.