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date: 19 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

Cinema and television have affected Italian politics in different ways. Despite the limited prominence of politics in cinema, with the exception of comedy, political parties have made use of films to promote their agenda. Television extensively shaped the political arena, especially since the 1980s, when the development of commercial broadcasting along with a series of programs increased political coverage, bringing the personal qualities of politicians closer in focus. After the 1990s, television enjoyed unprecedented dominance in national life: it provided the main forum of debate, shaped values, and set the political agenda. As politics and entertainment became entwined, those who could harness television, especially Silvio Berlusconi, were able to thrive in the political arena. However, the emergence of new types of media has undermined the role of television as shown by the recent success of the Five Star Movement, which eschewed the medium.

Keywords: television, cinema, commercial broadcasing, political coverage, entertainment, Silvio Berlusconi, Five Star Movement

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