1943 stands out as a year of transitions. Developments, ranging from Italy’s capitulation to the achievements of national liberation movements, illustrated the reverse of the tide and the victorious prospects of the United Nations; questions of social, economic, and political reconstruction produced novel forms of international cooperation; diverse “blueprints for tomorrow” reflected aspirations and concerns, while their implementation generated tensions that undermined the cohesion of antifascist unity. Conceptualizations of the future reflected the anticipation of a new world order that would mark a radical exodus from interwar and wartime experiences. The transforming atmosphere of 1943 signifies the emergence of dilemmas that had been, up to that point, subordinated to the priorities of the war effort and the rise of perplexities that mirrored the shifting social and political dynamics of the period.
The “Global 1943” workshop intends to explore the interplay between political imagination and the realization of the ensuing challenges regarding postwar transition. Even though the wartime apocalyptical rhetoric presented the “future” as a decisive breach from contemporary hardships, multiple developments indicated that the anticipated “future” was rooted in the social and political questions that dominated the present. Therefore the reexamination of 1943 could underline the continuities and discontinuities between interwar transformations, wartime experiences, and postwar reconfigurations.