This article investigates the various stages and moments of what proved to be a very popular political tour of the Italian peninsula undertaken by Vincenzo Gioberti in the summer of 1848. The aim of this propaganda tour was to visit several places in order to promote and popularise the ideas underlying the Italian national movement. The highlights of the tour were the public speeches the Piedmontese abbot held in many different towns. In these speeches he repeatedly put forward a narrative aimed at assigning to the various Italian localities he visited a specific place against the backdrop, as it were, of a shared Risorgimento tapestry. By means of an incisive communication strategy he sought to combine the national message with the deep-rooted Italian municipal traditions. At the intersection between political and cultural history, this study nevertheless examines various issues which allow Gioberti’s tour to be read in the light of the cultural paradigms proposed by the "new history of the Risorgimento". In particular, the political tour analysed in this article is an especially good example of how, during the Italian "long Forty-eight", political propaganda activated new communication circuits and explored new methods and practices of communication, based on essentially innovative methods of shaping public opinion.
Keywords: 1848, Vincenzo Gioberti, Italian Risorgimento, national identity, municipalism, political communication