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Grant Amyot

Throughout 2008, the crisis of Alitalia filled the headlines and the news

programs as the state-owned airline lurched closer to final bankruptcy,

while politicians, unionists, and business leaders argued and negotiated

over its fate. It was one of the principal issues of the election campaign:

Silvio Berlusconi came out strongly against the proposed sale of

the company to Air France-KLM, vowing to keep the airline in Italian

hands. He eventually induced an Italian consortium to step in and take

over the company, but in January 2009 the new Alitalia signed a partnership

agreement with Air France-KLM, which made the Franco-Dutch

company the largest single shareholder and was very possibly a prelude

to a future takeover. In the meantime, however, Berlusconi’s efforts to

preserve the appearance of Italian control cost the taxpayers up to 4 billion

euros more than the original deal with Air France.

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Nicholas Bayne

The G8 summit meets every year over a weekend in the summer.

It brings together the Presidents of the United States and France;

the Chancellor of Germany; and the Prime Ministers of Japan, the

United Kingdom, Italy and Canada, together with the European

Union (Commission and presidency) and, since 1998, the President

of Russia. Each G8 member acts in turn as summit host while

holding the summit presidency, always in the same order: France,

US, UK, Germany, Japan, Italy and Canada – Russia has not yet

hosted a summit. The G8 has no headquarters or staff of its own,

so all of the responsibility for preparing and holding the summit

falls to the country holding the presidency for the year. That gives

the host country an unusual opportunity to influence the direction

of international economic and political decision making, and most

G8 members use this opportunity to the full.

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Massimiliano Andretta and Nicola Chelotti

The G8 summit meets annually, bringing together the heads of government

of France, the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom,

Germany, Italy, Japan, and Canada.1 The rotating president of the

European Council and the president of the European Commission also

participate. The countries involved take turns hosting the summit, and

in 2009, Italy hosted it for the fifth time since 1975 in L’Aquila. Italy’s

prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi, has been in the unique position of

hosting the summit three consecutive times—in 1994, 2001, and 2009.

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Introduction

Civilization

Pim den Boer

A series of panels focusing on the concept of civilization were organized in each one of the annual meetings held by the History of Political and Social Concepts Group (HPSCG) in New York (2005), Uppsala (2006) and Istanbul (2007). The guiding idea of such an effort was to stimulate research on what became one of the most successful eighteenth-century neologisms in modern socio-political vocabulary. There has been extensive historical and conceptual research on civilization in German, French and English, but little has been produced on its introduction, translation and usage in other European and non-European languages.

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Matteo Salvini's Northern League in 2016

Between Stasis and New Opportunities

Davide Vampa

Under Matteo Salvini’s leadership, the Northern League has sought to move away from its status of regionalist party to become a truly national (even nationalist) party, following the example of the National Front in France. For the new leader, the issues of federalism and devolution seem to play a less relevant role than opposition to the European Union and, more generally, to the so-called political establishment. This chapter shows that 2016 has been a transition year for the party. After two years of significant electoral expansion, the 2016 local elections seemed to mark a moment of stagnation. Salvini’s popularity ceased to grow and even started to decline. This posed some challenges to his right-wing populist project. Yet the concluding section of the chapter highlights the new political opportunities arising from Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election and from Renzi’s constitutional referendum defeat at the end of 2016.

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Osvaldo Croci

The military intervention in Iraq by the United States (US), supported

militarily by Great Britain and politically by a “coalition of the willing,”

which included a large number of current and future European

Union (EU) members but not Germany and France, was undoubtedly

the major foreign policy event of the year. It generated much debate

on concepts such as immediate threat, pre-emptive war, unilateralism,

and multilateralism, as well as on the question of whether the

US, as the sole superpower, has the responsibility to act as a security

provider of last resort when multilateral organizations devoted to this

task become paralyzed. The intervention divided not only the permanent

members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) after

a decade of co-operation but also caused a split in the Atlantic alliance

and among EU members, probably one of the worst to have occurred

on a foreign policy issue in the history of both organizations. Finally,

it put an end—at least temporarily—to that bipartisan consensus in

Italian foreign policy, which had emerged at the end of the 1970s and

consolidated in the 1990s.

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The Modernity of Political Representation

Its Innovative Thrust and Transnational Semantic Transfers during the Sattelzeit (Eighteenth to Nineteenth Centuries)

Samuel Hayat and José María Rosales

during and after the English Civil War is well known. 10 Likewise, its uses by the founding fathers of modern representative governments (in France, Great Britain, and the United States) are even better known. 11 However, the more underground and long

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Marina Soroka

of the vintage of wines. I am learning to recognize excellence in gems. I can make graceful little speeches in Russian, French, German, English, Chinese, and Italian. I have been thoroughly coached in protocol, it holds no terrors for me, and I know

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Editorial

Ism Concepts in Science and Politics

Jani Marjanen

rhetoric of grouping isms together became politically relevant in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. At this time, there was an influx of ism words in French and English describing religious heresies. After this, new isms have appeared to describe

Open access

Heidi Hakkarainen

language underwent significant transformation. Many concepts that would later become an integral part of modern intellectual history were coined in the period following the French Revolution in 1789. One of the key concepts included in the volumes of