America, the Vatican and the Catholic Church sphere of activity in Italian post-war cinema (1945-1960)
The thesis examines the extent the means and the degree to which the American and the Vatican's common cultural ideology was expressed in the film industry of post-war Italy (1945-1960). Through a comparative approach of current theories developed on ideology and an analysis of official documents from the Vatican and the United States Department of State, the thesis investigates the decisive role that American production companies played in the development of the Italian film industry and their links to the Vatican. This analysis evaluates how the Italian production and distribution industries satisfied the American political and economic interests. American political and cultural ideology of the post-1945 era, is compared with the Roman Catholic ideology in order to assess how close their cultural propaganda was. This is followed by studies of the roles played by key individuals, such as Giulio Andreotti and institutions such as ANICA and A.G.I.S. involved in formulating the policies and regulations that affected the production and distribution of American and Italian films in the post-1945 era, as well as the involvement of the Roman Catholic Church in this process. The case studies, which make up the remaining part of the dissertation, illustrate the relationship with the theoretical issues raised in its first part and their ramifications in the relationship between the Catholics and Italian and America cinema. The operation of the Centro Cattolico Cinematografico combined with box-office returns allows for the creation of a new analytical technique to be applied, one that has not been utilized in previous studies of Neorealist films and Italian popular cinema. It makes it possible to highlight the cross-currents that existed across different cinematic genres and styles of those American and Italian post-war movies, which were under the Catholic Church's sphere of activity.