From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Benito Mussolini (July 29 1883 – April 28, 1945) was the dictator of Italy from 1922 until 1943, when he was overthrown. He established a repressive fascist regime that valued nationalism, militarism, anti-liberalism and anti-communism combined with strict censorship and state propaganda.
Mussolini became a close ally of German dictator Adolf Hitler, whom he influenced. Mussolini entered World War II in June, 1940 on the side of Nazi Germany. Three years later, the Allies invaded Italy. In April 1945 Mussolini attempted to escape to German-controlled Austria, only to be captured and killed near Lake Como by Communist Resistance units.
Mussolini in popular culture
- Mussolini is spoofed in Charlie Chaplin's The Great Dictator, where he is named Benzino Napaloni, dictator of Bacteria. The character is portrayed by Jack Oakie.
- In the Simpsons episode The Italian Bob, Homer waves to a crowd in an Italian village in the same manner as Mussolini, though he thought he impersonated Donald Trump.