Until Italian unification, vast areas of Apulia were an uninhabited sheep walk. In the late nineteenth century this frontier area was settled and agro-business established. In the quasi-colonial context of the South of Italy, the relations between landowners and farm workers were characterized by extreme forms of oppression and brutality. This book is a study of the world the landlords made and of the harsh structures of profit, tenure, and climate they faced. It is also a powerful investigation of the appallingly grim conditions in the teeming agricultural centres of the region and a vivid history of the struggle by the farm workers to win the ordinary decencies of life - clothes, clean water, and bread. In the process, the labourers formed a potent anarcho-syndicalist movement whose history the book relates from the first general strikes in 1901 to the restoration of the landlords' power by fascist terror in 1922.
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(216mm x 138mm x 15mm)
Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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