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[Release] PragerU and Dinesh D’Souza Unearth the Leftist Roots of Fascism

Dec. 6, 2017

LOS ANGELES — Since the 1970s, nearly every Republican politician has been labeled a fascist by the left at some point in their career. The slur is often pointed directly at conservative presidents, including the current office-holder, President Trump. In PragerU’s newest video, Is Fascism Left or Right?, bestselling author and filmmaker, Dinesh D’Souza corrects the record by exposing fascism’s true beginnings as a left-wing ideology rooted in socialism. 

D’Souza begins by pointing out that everyone knows the ideological founders of capitalism and communism: Adam Smith and Karl Marx respectively. Then D’Souza asks the question: Who is the philosopher of fascism? Most people don’t know, contends D’Souza, not because he doesn’t exist, but because historians, who are mostly on the left, have chosen instead to “erase him from history to avoid confronting fascism’s actual beliefs.”

The father of fascism is a man named Giovanni Gentile. 

Born in 1875, Gentile was one of the world’s most influential philosophers in the first half of the 20th century. Inspired by his mentor Karl Marx, Gentile believed that the state should resemble a family. This remains a common leftist theme. During the 1984 convention of the Democratic Party, the governor of New York, Mario Cuomo, likened America to “an extended family where, through the government, people all take care of each other.” Thirty years later, the slogan of the 2012 Democratic Party convention was, “The government is the only thing we all belong to.” 

Gentile considered fascism to be the most workable form of socialism. “Fascism mobilizes people by appealing to their national identity as well as their class,” explains D’Souza. “Fascists are socialists with a national identity.” 

Gentile also believed all private action should be oriented to serve society, with no distinction between private interest and public interest. He considered the state to be the administrative arm of society, so society and all its members were to submit to the state in everything.  

Italian fascist dictator, Benito Mussolini, simply paraphrased Gentile when he wrote in his Dottrina del Fascismo, one of the doctrinal statements of early fascism, “All is in the state and nothing human exists or has value outside the state.” 

Just like Gentile, Democratic progressives champion a centralized state, which explains the recent expansion of state control in the private sectors of healthcare, banking, education and energy. “Leftists can’t acknowledge their man, Gentile, because that would undermine their attempt to bind conservatism to fascism,” says D’Souza.

Conservatives support small government in order to empower individual liberties, but the left wants the resources of individuals and industries to service the state. “To acknowledge Gentile is to acknowledge that fascism bears a deep kinship to the ideology of today’s left. So, they will keep Gentile where they’ve got him: dead, buried, and forgotten,” concludes D’Souza.

MEDIA NOTE: Please email  to schedule an interview with PragerU contributor Dinesh D’Souza, Founder Dennis Prager, or CEO Marissa Streit.



PragerU, founded by Dennis Prager in 2011, is a not-for-profit organization that helps millions understand the values that shaped America and provides millions of Americans and people around the world with the intellectual ammunition they need to advocate for limited government, individual responsibility and economic freedom. In 2017 alone, PragerU’s videos have received over 550 million views and over 60% of the viewers are under the age of 35. PragerU is a resource for all who value liberty. It is a threat to all those who do not.

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