Milica Kacin Wohinz

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Milica Kacin Wohinz
Pahor predstavitev.jpg
Milica Kacin Wohinz (left) in Trieste
with Boris Pahor and historian
Marta Verginella.
Born (1930-10-12) October 12, 1930 (age 90)
Cerkno, [Kingdom of Italy], now Slovenia
Alma mater University of Ljubljana
Scientific career
Fields modern history

Milica Kacin Wohinz (née Brezigar, born 12 October 1930) is a Slovenian historian best known for her seminal study on the history of the forceful Italianization of the Slovene minority in Italy (1920–1947) that took place between 1918 and 1943. [1]



Wohinz was born in the Slovene Littoral, which was annexed by the Kingdom of Italy after World War I. At the age of twelve, she was expelled from school by the Italian Fascist regime as punishment for her father's resistance to Italianization. [1] During World War II, she joined the Liberation Front of the Slovenian People, helping Slovene partisans. After World War II and the annexation of the Slovenian Littoral to Yugoslavia in 1947, she attended the Slovene-language high schools in Postojna and Ljubljana.

In 1952, she enrolled at the University of Ljubljana, where she studied history. She obtained her PhD in 1970 under the supervision of Vasilij Melik. From 1959 onward, she worked at the Institute of Contemporary History in Ljubljana. Between 1979 and 1983, she was head of the institute. [1]

Marxist pressures against her work

Because her research topic was the history of an ethnic minority and not the history of the working class, her work was subjected to Marxist criticisms by Dušan Kermavner during Slovenia's socialist period. [1]


Her works on Slovene and Croat anti-Fascist resistance against Italianization are considered pioneering. She was one of the first historians to engage in thorough research of the militant anti-Fascist organization TIGR.

She was member of the joint Slovenian-Italian Cultural-Historical Commission, established by the governments of the Republic of Slovenia and Republic of Italy to jointly publish the account of the historical relationship between the two peoples from 1880 to 1954 based on historiographic examination of sources. [1] [2]

Selected publications

In Slovene
In Italian

Related Research Articles

The history of Slovenia chronicles the period of the Slovenian territory from the 5th century BC to the present. In the Early Bronze Age, Proto-Illyrian tribes settled an area stretching from present-day Albania to the city of Trieste. Slovenian territory was part of the Roman Empire, and it was devastated by Barbarian incursions in late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages, since the main route from the Pannonian plain to Italy ran through present-day Slovenia. Alpine Slavs, ancestors of modern-day Slovenians, settled the area in the late 6th Century A.D. The Holy Roman Empire controlled the land for nearly 1,000 years, and between the mid 14th century and 1918 most of Slovenia was under Habsburg rule. In 1918, Slovenes formed Yugoslavia along with Serbs and Croats, while a minority came under Italy. The state of Slovenia was created in 1945 as part of federal Yugoslavia. Slovenia gained its independence from Yugoslavia in June 1991, and is today a member of the European Union and NATO.


TIGR, an abbreviation for Trst 'Trieste', Istra 'Istria', Gorica 'Gorizia', and Reka 'Rijeka', full name Revolutionary Organization of the Julian March T.I.G.R., was a militant anti-fascist and insurgent organization established as a response to the Fascist Italianization of the Slovene and Croat people on part of the former Austro-Hungarian territories that became part of Italy after the First World War, and were known at the time as the Julian March. It is considered one of the first anti-fascist resistance movements in Europe. It was active between 1927 and 1941.

Cerkno Place in Littoral, Slovenia

Cerkno is a small town in the Littoral region of Slovenia. It has around 2,000 inhabitants and is the administrative centre of the Cerkno Hills. It is the seat of the Municipality of Cerkno.

The Slovenes, also known as Slovenians, are a South Slavic ethnic group native to Slovenia, and also to Italy, Austria and Hungary in addition to having a diaspora throughout the world. Slovenes share a common ancestry, culture, history and speak Slovene as their native language.

Julian March Region

Venezia Giulia, traditionally called Julian March or Julian Venetia is an area of southeastern Europe which is currently divided among Croatia, Italy and Slovenia. The term was coined in 1863 by the Italian linguist Graziadio Isaia Ascoli, a native of the area, to demonstrate that the Austrian Littoral, Veneto, Friuli and Trentino shared a common Italian linguistic identity. Ascoli emphasized the Augustan partition of Roman Italy at the beginning of the Empire, when Venetia et Histria was Regio X.

Slovene Littoral

The Slovene Littoral is one of the five traditional regions of Slovenia. Its name recalls the former Austrian Littoral, the Habsburg possessions on the upper Adriatic coast, which the Slovene Littoral was part of.

Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca

The Princely County of Gorizia and Gradisca, historically sometimes shortened to and spelled "Goritz", was a crown land of the Habsburg dynasty within the Austrian Littoral on the Adriatic Sea, in what is now a multilingual border area of Italy and Slovenia. It was named for its two major urban centers, Gorizia and Gradisca d'Isonzo.

Slovene Lands

The Slovene lands or Slovenian lands is the historical denomination for the territories in Central and Southern Europe where people primarily spoke Slovene. The Slovene lands were part of the Illyrian provinces, the Austrian Empire and Austria-Hungary. They encompassed Carniola, southern part of Carinthia, southern part of Styria, Istria, Gorizia and Gradisca, Trieste, and Prekmurje. Their territory more or less corresponds to modern Slovenia and the adjacent territories in Italy, Austria, Hungary, and Croatia, where autochthonous Slovene minorities live. In the areas where present-day Slovenia borders to neighboring countries, they were never homogeneously ethnically Slovene.

Province of Ljubljana

The Province of Ljubljana was the central-southern area of Slovenia. In 1941, it was annexed by Fascist Italy, and after 1943 occupied by Nazi Germany. Created on May 3, 1941, it was abolished on May 9, 1945, when the Slovene Partisans and partisans from other parts of Yugoslavia liberated it from the Nazi Operational Zone of the Adriatic Littoral. Its administrative centre was Ljubljana.

Plavje Place in Littoral, Slovenia

Plavje is a village in the City Municipality of Koper in the Littoral region of Slovenia. It is located on the northernmost edge of the Istrian peninsula, on the border with Italy, on a small hill overlooking the Gulf of Trieste.

Jože Pirjevec

Jože Pirjevec, italianised Giuseppe Pierazzi, is a Slovene-Italian historian and a prominent diplomatic historian of the west Balkans region, as well as a member of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts.

Marta Verginella Slovenian academic

Marta Verginella is a Slovenian historian from the Slovene minority in Italy in Trieste, notable as one of the most prominent contemporary Slovene historians. Together with Alenka Puhar, she is considered a pioneer in the history of family relations in the Slovene Lands.

Josip Vilfan or Wilfan was a Slovene lawyer, politician, and human rights activist from Trieste. In the early 1920s, he was one of the political leaders of the Slovene and Croatian minority in the Italian-administered Julian March. Together with Engelbert Besednjak, Lavo Čermelj and Ivan Marija Čok, he was the most influential representative of the Slovene émigrés from the Slovenian Littoral during the 1930s. Next to Leonid Pitamic and Boris Furlan, Vilfan is considered as one of the most important Slovene legal theorists of the first half of the 20th century.

Slovene Partisans

The Slovene Partisans, formally the National Liberation Army and Partisan Detachments of Slovenia, were part of Europe's most effective anti-Nazi resistance movement led by Yugoslav revolutionary communists during World War II, the Yugoslav Partisans. Since a quarter of Slovene ethnic territory and approximately 327,000 out of total population of 1.3 million Slovenes were subjected to forced Italianization since the end of the First World War, the objective of the movement was the establishment of the state of Slovenes that would include majority of Slovenes within a socialist Yugoslav federation in the post-War period.

Janko Premrl

Janko Premrl was a Slovene Partisan.

The Trieste National Hall or Slovene Cultural Centre, also known as the Hotel Balkan, in Trieste was a multimodal building that served as a centre for the Slovene minority in the city. It included the Slovene theatre in Trieste, a hotel and numerous cultural associations. It is notable for having been burned in 1920 by Italian Fascists, which made it a symbol of the Italian repression of the Slovene minority in Italy. The building was restored from 1988 to 1990.

The Slovene minority in Italy (1920–1947) was the indigenous Slovene population—approximately 327,000 out of a total population of 1.3 million ethnic Slovenes at the time—that was cut from the remaining three-quarters of the Slovene ethnic community after the First World War. According to the secret Treaty of London and the Treaty of Rapallo in 1920, the former Austrian Littoral and western part of the former Inner Carniola were annexed to the Kingdom of Italy. Whereas only a few thousand Italians were left in the new South Slavic state, a population of half a million Slavs, both Slovenes and Croats, was subjected to forced Italianization until the fall of Fascism in Italy. Most of the region known as the Slovenian Littoral was transferred to Yugoslavia under the terms of the Treaty of Peace with Italy, 1947.

World War II in the Slovene Lands started in April 1941 and lasted until May 1945. Slovene Lands was in a unique situation during World War II in Europe, only Greece shared its experience of being trisected, however, Drava Banovina was the only region that experienced a further step — absorption and annexation into neighboring Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, and Hungary. The Slovene-settled territory was divided largely between Nazi Germany and the Kingdom of Italy, with smaller territories occupied and annexed by Hungary and the Independent State of Croatia.

Slovene minority in Italy, also known as Slovenes in Italy is the name given to Italian citizens who belong to the autochthonous Slovene ethnic and linguistic minority living in the Italian autonomous region of Friuli – Venezia Giulia. The vast majority of members of the Slovene ethnic minority live in the Provinces of Trieste, Gorizia, and Udine. Estimates of their number vary significantly; the official figures show 52,194 Slovenian speakers in Friuli-Venezia Giulia, as per the 1971 Census, but Slovenian estimates speak of 83,000 to 100,000 people.

Anti-fascism Opposition to fascist ideologies, groups and individuals

Anti-fascism is a political movement in opposition to fascist ideologies, groups and individuals. Beginning in European countries in the 1920s, it was at its most significant shortly before and during World War II, where the Axis powers were opposed by many countries forming the Allies of World War II and dozens of resistance movements worldwide. Anti-fascism has been an element of movements across the political spectrum and holding many different political positions such as anarchism, communism, pacifism, republicanism, social democracy, socialism and syndicalism as well as centrist, conservative, liberal and nationalist viewpoints.