Berlusconi's Italy

Mapping Contemporary Italian Politics

Michael Shin
Book Cover

PB: $27.95
EAN: 978-1-59213-717-6
Publication: Feb 08

HC: $66.50
EAN: 978-1-59213-716-9
Publication: Feb 08

Ebook: $27.95
EAN: 978-1-59213-718-3
Publication: Feb 08

184 pages
5.5 x 8.25
8 tables 19 figures

A richly informed new explanation for the rise and fall of Italy’s colorful Prime Minister

Read the Introduction (pdf).


Berlusconi’s Italy provides a fresh, thoroughly informed account of how Italy’s richest man came to be its political leader. Without dismissing the importance of personalities and political parties, it emphasizes the significance of changes in voting behaviors that led to the rise—and eventual fall—of Silvio Berlusconi, the millionaire media baron who became prime minister. Armed with new data and new analytic tools, Michael Shin and John Agnew reveal that regional politics and shifting geographical voting patterns were far more important to Berlusconi’s successes than the widely credited role of the mass media.;

Shin and Agnew reject the prevailing orthodoxy about how coalitions are organized and replaced in Italy. Instead, using recently developed methods of spatial analysis, they offer a compelling new argument about contextual re-creation and mutation. They conclude that Berlusconi’s success (and later defeat) can be best understood in geographic terms, and they suggest that geographical analysis has a useful role to play in examining political behavior in Italy and beyond.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Berlusconi's Italy
2. The Geography of the New Bipolarity, 1994-2006
3. Party Replacement, Italian Style
4. The Geographical Secret to Berlusconi's Success
5. What Went Up Later Came Down
6. Conclusion

About the Author(s)

Michael E. Shin is Associate Professor of Geography at the University of California, Los Angeles.

John A. Agnew is Professor of Geography at the University of California, Los Angeles. He is the author of Hegemony: The New Shape of Global Power (Temple), Place and Politics, The United States in the World Economy, The Geography of the World Economy, Geopolitics, and Place and Politics in Modern Italy, among other titles, as well as the co-editor of American Space/American Place.