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The Biennio Rosso (English: "Two Red Years") was a two year period, between 1919 and 1920, of intense social conflict in Italy. The Biennio Rosso was followed by the extremely violent reaction of the Fascist blackshirts militia and eventually by the March on Rome of Benito Mussolini in 1922. The Biennio Rosso took place in the two years following the first world war in a context of economic crisis, high unemployement and political instability. It was characterized by mass strikes, worker manifestations as well as self-management experiments through land and factories occupations. In Turin and Milan, workers councils were formed and many factory occupations took place. The agitations also extended to the agricultural areas of the Padan plain and were accompanied by peasant strikes, rural unrests and guerilla between left-wing and right-wing militias.


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