Events have made ‘fascism’ a term of political abuse
rather than one of serious ideological analysis. Moreover,
self-proclaimed fascists have claimed that fascism is beyond
intellectual analysis and have despised those who favour rational
examination of their beliefs. However, we take fascism seriously as an
ideology by examining fascist values and the concrete actions of some
Introduction All over the globe, fascism, racism and xenophobic nationalism are resurfacing in what we once
thought of as ‘respectable’ democracies. Following a particularly bleak weekend at
the end of October 2018 (the election of Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil, reports of worsening famine in
Yemen, Israeli bombardment of Gaza and the murder of eleven worshippers at a refugee-harbouring
synagogue in Pittsburgh), my colleague Dr Sara Salem of the London School of Economics tweeted:
‘It’s difficult watching political scientists scrambling to understand
In liberal democracies there is a belief that citizens ought to take an active interest in what is happening in the political world. Political debate in modern Western democracies is a complex and often rowdy affair. There are three fundamental political issues: 'politics', 'power' and 'justice', which feature in almost all political discussions and conflicts. The book assesses the degree to which the state and state sovereignty are disappearing in the modern world of 'globalised' politics, economics and culture and new international institutions. The main features of the nation and the problems of defining it are outlined: population, culture, history, language, religion, and race. Different types of democracy and their most important features are discussed. 'Freedom' is usually claimed to be the prime objective of political activity. The book discusses equality of human rights, distributional equality, equality before the law, the claims for group equality on the grounds of race, gender, class. Rights, obligations and citizenship are closely associated. Ideology is the driving force of political discourse. The book also discusses nationalism's growth and development over the last two centuries with particular reference to its main features and assumptions. It outlines the development of conservatism as a political ideology and movement in Britain during the last two centuries. An overview of liberalism, socialism, Marxism, anarchism, and Fascism follows. Environmentalism and feminism are also discussed. Finally, the book talks about how ideological change occurs and stresses the importance of rationality in politics.
In 2002, the French party system seems to be demonstrating a fluidity, if not outright instability, equal to any period in the Fifth Republic's history. This book explores the extent to which this represents outright change and shifts within a stable structure. Portrayals of French political culture point to incivisme, individualism and a distrust of organizations. The book focuses on three fundamental political issues such as 'politics', 'power' and 'justice', which appear in almost all political discussions and conflicts. It identifies different 'types' of state in political theory and looks at the major challenges to practical state sovereignty in the modern world. Discussing the concept of the nation in the United Kingdom, the book identifies both cultural and political aspects of nationhood. These include nation and state; race and nation; language and the nation; religion and national identity; government and nation; common historical and cultural ties; and a sense of 'nationhood'. Liberal democracy, defensive democracy and citizen democracy/republican democracy are explained. The book also analyses John Stuart Mill's and Isaiah Berlin's views on 'negative' and 'positive' freedom. Conservatism is one of the major intellectual and political strains of thought in Western culture. Liberalism has become the dominant ideology in the third millennium. Socialism sprang from the industrial revolution and the experience of the class that was its product, the working class. Events have made 'fascism' a term of political abuse rather than one of serious ideological analysis. Environmentalism and ecologism constitute one of the most recent ideological movements.
of the Manchurian crisis was that
Japan ignored the statements by the League of Nations. This discredited the League somewhat, and started to undermine the belief in the
system of collective security that had been developed with Covenant of
the League of Nations and the Geneva Protocol, designed to prevent
the use of force and the outbreak of war between member states. This
was the context in which the Labour Party embraced the most pacifist
stance of its history, just as the optimism of the 1920s was being
replaced by the growing fear of fascism in the early 1930s
of the time influence what they do with that
power when they have achieved it. Indeed, it is impossible to separate the
two. This applies even to those who deny having an ideology. The use of
power always takes place in a framework of ideology. Modern politics can
only be properly understood by reference to the great ideological movements:
conservatism, liberalism, socialism, fascism, and so on.
Ideologies tend to have a bad
One must not blame religion or
religious fundamentalism for the ills of the world. Radical secularism and
the political pseudo-religions of fascism and communism have created as much
misery and death as has religion during the twentieth century. In fact, it
has often been religion that has inspired people to enormous sacrifices in
resisting such tyrannies: Protestants in Nazi Germany, Catholics in
of socialism. Both are critical of capitalist society and both
advocate radical and revolutionary change in society. Here we discuss the
main features of each movement and the degree of success they have had in
improving society. Marxism as a state ideology is studied, as well as
anarchism’s critique of both capitalism and state socialism.
13 FascismFascism is a reaction to liberalism and
of the state’ (Bauer 1919: 96–7).
But none of these ambitious projects were realised. And with the rise
of fascism first in Italy and then in Germany and Austria, there was the
imminent threat that the contradiction between capitalism and democracy would be ‘solved’ by abolishing democracy in the political sphere.
M1738 - CALLAGHAN TEXT.indd 272
The fascist regimes used the dictatorial power they had obtained with the
help of the big corporations and old aristocratic elites to crush violently the
labour movement and
right linked violence in Germany, Austria and elsewhere).
The importance of extreme right parties is also visible in the field of
research. Not only has the number of studies on the subject exploded, but
also the number of scholars active in the field and the theoretical approaches
applied to the field has expanded enormously (see Mudde 1996). Probably
the most important development since the early 1980s has been the influx
of scholars that originally worked outside the field of right-wing extremism
(and historical fascism). This has, on the one hand, brought valuable