Epstein M. Philosophy of Ethnicity. Neo-Eurasianism. Lev Gumilev.

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Публикация включает заключительные 6-й и 7-й разделы третьей главы “Философия национального духа” опуса Михаила Эпштейна “Философская и гуманистическая мысль в России после 1950 года”. Об уровне владения автором темой наглядно свидетельствует тот факт, что он перепутал даже годы жизни Льва Гумилёва, но зато уверенно рассуждает о “близости евразийства и нацизма”.

This chapter describes the emergence and evolution of neo-Slavophilic and neo-conservative views as they become increasingly important in the Soviet intellectual landscape since the 1960’s. In the West, the platform of moderate Russian nationalism is best known through the books of Alexander Solzhenitsyn, but the two sections of the chapter presented below focus on other tendencies in nationalist thought, which are much more influential in contemporary Russia because of their extremism. Lev Gumilev (1912-1990) is the leading theoretician of Eurasianism, a movement founded in 1918, immediately after the October Revolution, by Russian emigrants whose ideas both were influenced by and anticipated some theories of Italian and German fascists. Eurasianism argues for the specificity of Eurasia as a geographical and historical body distinct from both Europe and Asia. One of Eurasia’s distinguishing features is its tradition of ideocracy, which
subjects the individuality of a citizen to the ‘symphonic,’ totalizing personality of the State. In the Eurasian state of the future, the spiritual traditions of Orthodoxy will be integrated with the organizational principles of communism, which also illustrates the closeness of Eurasianism to National Socialism.
In his historical and geographical investigations, Gumilev attempts to substantiate the long-standing unity of Slavic and Turkish nations as the two major constituents of Eurasian identity. More importantly, he advances an original theory of ethnicity, which explains the rise and decline of ethnic formations by biological rather than social factors, that is by disproportionate infusions of cosmic energies into the biological mass of humankind. Gumilev’s key concept is “drive,” or “passionality” which accumulates in the “heroic personalities” of certain nations and
accounts for their historical accomplishments. Ethnic mixing produces “chimeric” formations that, being devoid of moral traditions and psychological stability, are destructive to nature and rife with nihilistic impulses. The Soviet Union serves Gumilev as an implicit example of such a negative ethnic experiment and, although he is careful not to be overtly racist, his theory of ethnogenesis is sometimes used as a justification for racist views condemning mixed marriage.
Another movement close to Eurasianism, but based on occult rather than ethnographic premises, is called “radical traditionalism.” It promotes the restoration of archaic cults and mysteries, in hopes of achieving a union of man with the primordial elements of nature, and champions an esoteric caste system, in contrast with the democratic and egalitarian societies of the West. Traditionalists distinguish themselves from more moderate conservatives, like Solzhenitsyn, since they do not want to restore the pre-revolutionary past, but rather to implement a new, Rightist revolution. Also in contradistinction with Solzhenitsyn, their political strategy is not isolationist, but presupposes the consolidation of Rightist movements all over the world. They seek the rapprochement of Russia with Western Europe on the basis of a principle called “continentalism,” which they oppose to English and American “atlanticism.” The antagonism of these two principles is decisive for the traditionalist philosophy of geopolitics: atlanticism is peculiar to sea-oriented and extroverted nations which valorize international communication and mercantilism, whereas continentalism presupposes introversion, a strong tie to the soil, and fidelity to national tradition. According to traditionalist projections, the world will one day
witness a war between Eurasian continentalism, championed by Russia, and global atlanticism, upheld by the United States. Radical traditionalism is the most extreme variety of Rightist Russian philosophy, challenging both liberalism and moderate, humanistic conservatism and attempting to make the twenty-first century the epoch of another worldwide revolution, spiritually opposed to the democratic and communist revolutions of recent history.

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