Ernest Ialongo, Assistant Professor of History
Ernest Ialongo, Assistant Professor of History at Hostos, where he teaches Modern World and American History, has published a new book, Filippo Tommaso Marinetti: The Artist and his Politics.

Ialongo said the book explores the politics of the leader of the Futurist art movement. Emerging in Italy in 1909, Futurism sought to propel Italy into the modern world, and is famously known for outlandish claims to want to destroy museums and libraries in order to speed this transition.

“Futurism, however, also had a much darker political side,” contends Ialongo. “It glorified war as the solution to many of Italy’s ills and was closely tied to the Fascist Regime. In this book, I focused on Marinetti as the chief determinant of Futurist politics and explored how a seemingly revolutionary art movement, at one point having some support among revolutionary left-wing movements in Italy, could eventually become so intimately tied to the repressive Fascist regime.”

Book cover of "Filippo Tommaso Marinetti: The Artist and his Politics"

Ialongo traces Marinetti’s politics from before the foundation of Futurism, through the Great War, and then throughout the twenty-year Fascist dictatorship, using a wide range of published and unpublished sources. Futurist politics are presented within the wider context of developments in Italy and Europe, and Ialongo further highlights how Marinetti’s political choices influenced the art of his movement.
Ialongo, who started teaching at Hostos in 2008, said the motivation for the book began when he was in graduate school.

“During a graduate seminar at the CUNY Grad School, my advisor, Dr. Philip Cannistraro, taught a class on World War I and modern culture. For that class, I wrote a review of the historical literature on Marinetti's political career. Phil took me to lunch afterwards and told me this topic should be my dissertation: a thorough explanation of Marinetti's politics and why he did what he did. After that, I never looked back,” Ialongo said.

Filippo Tommaso Marinetti: The Artist and his Politics is available on Amazon here.  

More about Ernest Ialongo:
Ernest Ialongo is Assistant Professor of History at Hostos Community College in The City University of New York, where he teaches Modern World and American History. He holds a Ph.D. in Modern European History from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, and an MA and BA in History from York University (Toronto, Canada). His area of scholarly expertise is the intersection of politics and culture in Modern Italy. He is the co-editor of New Directions in Italian and Italian American History: Selected Essays from the Conference in Honor of Philip Cannistraro (2013), and the co-editor of a special section of the Journal of Modern Italian Studies entitled “Reconsidering Futurism” (September 2013). He is also the author of various articles dealing with Futurism, politics, and culture in liberal and Fascist Italy. He has presented his work at a variety of national and international venues, and is currently the Chair of the Columbia University Seminar in Modern Italian Studies.
About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College’s unique "Student Success Coaching Unit" provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services.
Recently named one of the top 10 finalists for the 2015 Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence, Hostos offers 27 associate degree programs and two certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to The City University of New York’s (CUNY) four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of CUNY, the nation’s leading urban public university, which serves more than 500,000 students at 24 colleges.