The recent rise in Europe of extreme right-wing political parties along with outbreaks of violent nationalist fervor in the former communist bloc has occasioned much speculation on a possible resurgence of fascism. At the polemical level, fascism has become a generic term applied to virtually any form of real or potential violence, while among Marxist and left-wing scholars discredited interpretations of fascism as a -product of late capitalism- are revived. Empty of cognitive significance, these formulas disregard the historical and philosophical roots of fascism as it arose in Italy and spread throughout Europe. In Giovanni Gentile: Philosopher of Fascism, A. James Gregor returns to those roots by examining the thought of Italian Fascisms major theorist.In Gregors reading of Gentile, fascism was-and remains-an anti-democratic reaction to what were seen to be the domination by advanced industrial democracies of less-developed or status-deprived communities and nations languishing on the margins of the -Great Powers.- Sketching in the political background of late nineteenth-century Italy, industrially backward and only recently unified, Gregor shows how Gentile supplied fascism its justificatory rationale as a developmental dictatorship. Gentiles Actualism (as his philosophy came to be identified) absorbed many intellectual currents of the early twentieth century including nationalism, syndicalism, and futurism and united them in a dynamic rebellion against new perceived hegemonic impostures of imperialism. The individual was called to an idealistic ethic of obedience, work, self-sacrifice, and national community. As Gregor demonstrates, it was a paradigm of what we can expect in the twenty-first centurys response, on the part of marginal nations, to the globalization of the industrialized democracies. Gregor cites post-Maoist China, nationalist Russia, Africa, and the Balkans at the development stage from which fascism could grow.The first book-length analysis in English of Gentiles thought in over thirty years, this volume is valuable not only as a work of historical scholarship but as a timely warning. While Marxism-Leninism has passed into history, fascism may yet reemerge as an external threat to democratic nations.