"Elias feIt that comparisons of types of dictatorships would on I y be useful if one knew the structure of the society in which the dictatorship arose. Clearly not all dictatorships could be called fascist. Were Nkrumah and Nasser fascists, for example? In order to make valid distinctions, it was essential to refer the phenomenon of the dictatorial regime to the stage of development of the society. Phrases such as 'when fascism came to power' were frequently used. But they meant little unless the preexisting social structure was understood. Fascism always oc-cured in a conflict situation - hence the need to analyse the conflict out of which it arose. In Germany and Italy, and perhaps in Japan, the emergence of the regimes was connected with industrialization processes. It could not be described simply as a growth process, as the characteristic of every industrialization process is that certain groups find their previous status and livelihood endangered. Thus the phenomenon of fascism was to be understood in terms of the rising and declining groups inherent in the process of industrialization. In Germany and Italy the small traders, the artisans, many of the peasants were suffering from industrialization as the process got under way. This might not explain fascism, but it provided part of the raw material which then became organized in the fascist movements. This, for Elias, was an example of the inadequacy of thinking in economic terms about such phenomena as fascism, unless the terms and categories were linked to the human groups affected by economic development. Such economic categories as inflation or prices needed to be translated into sociological categories in order to identify the effects upon the social groups. This brought one back to the conflict situation out of which fascist movements arose."



Stuart Joseph Woolf: Discussion - Fascism and the Economy, in: idem (ed.): The Nature of Fascism, New York/N.Y./USA: Vintage Books, , S. 196-197