Transnational War Volunteering: From Garibaldi to the Cold War

Enrico Acciai, Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow, University of Leeds; Nir Arielli, International History, University of Leeds
10.07.2018 - 11.07.2018
Enrico Acciai

In the second half of the nineteenth century and in the early twentieth century supporters of Giuseppe Garibaldi volunteered their services and took part in the Polish uprising of 1863, the Cretan revolt of 1866-1867, the Franco-Prussian War of 1870-1871, the Herzegovina uprising of 1875, the Greco-Turkish War of 1896 and the First Balkan War of 1912-1913. A cohort of transnational Garibaldini volunteers also fought for France in 1914-1915 and the name of Garibaldi was once again invoked by the International Brigades during the Spanish Civil War (1936-1939). In many ways, Garibaldinism served as a bridge between different radical political creeds: anarchism, socialism and, later on, communism.

The conference seeks to explore traditions of transnational military engagement associated with political radicalism and the legacy of Garibaldi as well as to examine how practices of volunteering to fight against colonial occupation and perceived oppression continued into the Cold War.

We particularly encourage papers dealing with the participation of foreign volunteers in anti-colonial and/or Cold War conflicts in post-1945 Africa, Asia, the Middle East and Latin America. Enquiries and proposals of up to 300 words (in English)

A keynote lecture will be given by Professor Lucy Riall (European University Institute). Limited funds will be available to help pay for the travel expenses of participants, with preference given to early career researchers.


Enrico Acciai (Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellow, University of Leeds)
Nir Arielli (Associate Professor of International History, University of Leeds)

Transnational War Volunteering: From Garibaldi to the Cold War, 10.07.2018 – 11.07.2018 Leeds, in: Connections. A Journal for Historians and Area Specialists, 18.11.2017, <>.
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