The Fourth Political Theory: Serbian vision
The Fourth Political Theory: Serbian vision
(interview of Serbian philosopher Boris Nad by Natella Speranskaya)
1. How did you discover the Fourth Political Theory? And how would you evaluate its chances of becoming a major ideology of the 21st century?
– Liberalism is, undoubtedly, a totalitarian ideology. It strives for global domination, and its rise is associated with the American planetary hegemony. Liberalism has not issued any "liberation" but a new enslavement of man, reducing the individual to an uprooted, atomized individual – to the "consumeristic", "economic animal". It is a totalitarian structure, the Society of planetary nomads with no identity, the most complete embodiment of the contemporary United States or the EU, and in the perspective of a single "world market". This is Hobbes' Leviathan, where everyone fights against everyone. The consequences of its triumph were just a disaster: the ecological destruction of the Earth, an unsustainable economy, depletion of resources, the growing poverty of a large part of humanity, brutal wars around the globe, the new slavery, the new colonialism, economic inequality so far unrecorded in history...
The Fourth Political Theory is not the product of an individual, even one's personal desires, but a whole range of, sometimes very contradictory tendencies; in that sense, it is a certainty, and here lies its real strength. Similar trends existed in Serbia; only to mention here the works of Dragos Kalajić. Alexander Dugin, in his book "The Fourth Political Theory" gave it so far the clearest, most comprehensive and most precise formulation. This is a crucial step and probably the programme book for this century. Ability of the Fourth political theory to deliver a global challenge to atlantism and become dominant in this century will depend on its ability to unite a variety of movements across the globe in a common liberal opposition to Atlantic Leviathan, overcoming intolerance, and here it shows a considerable potential.
2. Leo Strauss when commenting on the fundamental work of Carl Schmitt The Concept of the Political notes that despite all radical critique of liberalism incorporated in it Schmitt does not follow it through since his critique remains within the scope of liberalism”. “His anti-Liberal tendencies, – claims Strauss, - remain constrained by “systematics of liberal thought” that has not been overcome so far, which – as Schmitt himself admits – “despite all failures cannot be substituted by any other system in today’s Europe”. What would you identify as a solution to the problem of overcoming the liberal discourse? Could you consider the Fourth Political Theory by Alexander Dugin to be such a solution? The theory that is beyond the three major ideologies of the 20th century – Liberalism, Communism and Fascism, and that is against the Liberal doctrine.
– Mere criticism or negation never gets to the heart of problems, and this applies equally to anti-liberalism, anti-communism, and today very popular anti-fascism. We, on the contrary, need positive alternatives. Historically, any criticism of liberalism, even before the French Revolution, was justified, but it failed to stop its triumphant campaign, much less to prevent the disaster that it caused around the world. Leo Strauss points to the fundamental weakness in the Schmitt's critique of liberalism. It turns out that it is essential to get outside of the framework of liberal discourse, what reduces human relations solely on the relations of production and consumption, the mere market – and nothing more than that. Liberalism openly advocates selfishness and consumerism, on the other hand, paradoxically, denies social justice and solidarity. Finally, and perhaps most important: spiritual and religious dimension does not enter into its very tight and rigid frames. That is why the liberal ideals can be achieved only with violence against human nature.
Alexander Dugin correctly observes that all three current political theories had their own deep-rooted flaws. In other words, none of them succedeed to adequately express the truth of human nature. One who succeeds in that, will have the political future in a world that will be substantially different from today's. The fourth theory is not adressing just one political option, one culture, civilization, religion, one ethnicity, class or type of man: it is, in our opinion, a call to all who are willing to fight for their own freedom.
3. Do you agree that today there are “two Europes”: the one – the liberal one (incorporating the idea of “open society”, human rights, registration of same-sex marriages, etc.) and the other Europe (“a different Europe”) – politically engaged, thinker, intellectual, spiritual, the one that considers the status quo and domination of liberal discourse as a real disaster and the betrayal of the European tradition. How would you evaluate chances of victory of a “different Europe” over the
– Yes, but the "other" from our perspective is the "first" and authentic Europe, while "first" is the "other" – liberal, (post)modern Europe, Europe of a dictatorship of "human rights", only illusory open to all the differences, which is consistently represented by the modern European Union. This, as we now see, is a totalitarian structure, based on a truly totalitarian ideology, which is the product of late liberalism. It does not tolerate diversity and seeks unification and leveling. The key word in its vocabulary is control.
In his study, "European ideology" Serbian thinker Dragos Kalajić showed that the so-called "European values" talk about today’s Brussels’ commissioners, their spokesmen and supporters of the "Euro-Atlantic integration", actually a mere negation, or a betrayal of true European tradition. We could say: this is the real death of Europe, which begins with the Renaissance and western Enlightenment, and ends in liberal agony.
Unfortunately, in the West we only see the individual efforts and limited movement in the opposite direction. For the one true Europe to win over liberal Europe, it is necessary to mobilize all the remaining energies and passions of the European man, and this is actually not foreseeable. They might have been exhausted, or might have been asleep under the drugs of the illusory material prosperity. Maybe just a catastrophe could wake up the Western Europeans from the anesthesia.
4. „There is nothing more tragic than a failure to understand the historical moment we are currently going through; – notes Alain de Benoist – this is the moment of postmodern globalization”. The French philosopher emphasizes the significance of the issue of a new Nomos of the Earth or a way of establishing international relations. What do you think the fourth Nomos will be like? Would you agree that the new Nomos is going to be Eurasian and multipolar (transition from universum to pluriversum)?
– Nomos is one of the core concepts. Nomos of the Earth is the key. Liberalism, by destroying the Cold War division between East and West – therefore, in a geopolitical sense, the division of the land and the ocean – abolished the international law and in international relations introduced the rulling of the packs, ruled by "the strongest dog in the street". The Fourth Nomos implies the end of the planetary domination of the United States of America and the reduction to the status of a regional power, or more likely a few regional powers, possibly joined in a confederation. To survive, America would have to be born again.
Fourth Nomos has to be Eurasian. Unlike "globalist Nomos", it has to respect the differences among human beings, the differences between ethnic groups, cultures, civilizations and religions. It is the transition from the universum, amerocentrism (no longer Eurocentrism), to pluriversum, towards multipolarity. If this wave of globalization can not be stopped, and we believe that is the case, we have to turn it in our favour. Our response to the political future must be The Era of Eurasia.
5. Do you agree that the era of the white European human race has ended, and the future will be predetermined by Asian cultures and societies?
– This reversal was sensed by Oswald Spengler in the twenties of the last century. Here we should remember the teachings of Arnold Toynbee, who believed that every culture that has vanished from the face of the earth actually committed suicide. The era of the European white race ends because the Europeans no longer have the courage nor the passion to participate in history. I have dealt with this issue in my book "Return of the myth", and this condition I have called "post-history", of course in an entirely different sense than that of Marx or Fukuyama.
"Post-history" differs from history in that man really is no longer sovereign or lord, and he becomes a plaything in the hands of unknown forces. In the mature period of history man has ruled by himself, and history was a consequence of his actions, thoughts, passions or will. It now looms as something completely different; it is a technocratic utopia, totalitarianism in its complete form, and what it really is and how it will develop in the future can be glimpsed through the contemporary United States of America, or the European Union. It should be emphasized that neither the U.S. nor the EU were created on the basis of an idea, but as a mere market, not out of courage and strength, but out of selfishness, cowardice and weakness. It is, ultimately, only the result of the internal capitulation of modern man.
All this implies profound changes in art, and culture in general, which gradually turns into a "subculture", a kind of commercial activity or social engineering, which has the effect of anesthesia on its consumers, or drugs that relieve the anxiety of the masses with utopian fantasies.
Now, at the end of this cycle, we see a re-emerging Asia, quite different from the one we know from the colonial period. Asian ethnicities show a surprising vitality, and Asia does not stop to prove their ability to show surprises. That has something deeply mysterious, almost mystical.
6. Do you consider Russia to be a part of Europe or do you accept the view that Russia and Europe represent two different civilizations?
– Russia is not another (European) nation, state, or national culture, with, for them so characteristic, "narcissism of small differences" – it is a continent for themselves, a separate civilization. We owe this discovery to early Euroasians, such as P. Savicky and N. Trubetzkoy. Oswald Spengler's in the true poetic inspiration foresaw historic mission of Russia, but to the Russians this is nothing new, since the Russians have always lived with that feeling of universal man's mission.
According to Trubetzkoy, a decisive role in this was played by the Tatar occupation period, that is how Russia became the original union, the synthesis of the influences of Europe and Asia. I think it has even deeper roots, it should be searched in the early history: the impact of the Scythians, Sarmatians or Huns, or much earlier, in protohistory. This, however, applies to virtually the entire Eastern Europe – especially in the Balkans – which is now unsuccessfully trying to "integrate" and it should be said, to drown – in the West. Eastern Europe would therefore necessarily have to be constituted as a separate cultural and geopolitical space, with its own heritage, unique culture and special interests that are different from the West.
This is especially true for the Orthodox peoples, who share the Byzantine legacy (and Byzantium is undoubtedly a Eurasian superpower of its time). Serbs have very long lived under Ottoman occupation, which represents the influences of Asia, but it was certainly there well before the Turkish conquest. Serbia is Eurasia too: "East to West and West to East."
As it were, an abyss that divides the West from Eurasia-Russia has now become insurmountable. It is a gulf that divides life from death, health from disease, courage from cowardice, strength from weakness. That is why the eyes of the last Europeans are today aimed at Russia.
7. Contemporary ideologies are based on the principle of secularity. Would you predict the return of religion, the return of sacrality? If so, in what form? Do you consider it to be Islam, Christianity, Paganism or any other forms of religion?
– Modern political ideologies are based on secularism, but their deep basis is undoubtedly religious, as already discovered by Mircea Eliade. This applies equally to communism, fascism and liberalism, which is based on Protestant fundamentalism. Each of them has its eschatological message.
In my essay "The Return of the myth" I talked about it: the return of sacredness, myth, deeply suppressed and now warped religious impulse, without, as it turns out, any human community or society and (post)modern West cannot exist without, although this now occurs predominantly in deviant forms. Ernst Jünger wrote about mythical powers returning to, or breaking into the historical world. His worker is basically a mythical figure, a Titan of the new age, and he has yet to establish its relationship with the sacred.
The return of sacredness is certain, but we can not say in what form it will happen. As Orthodox Christians, we are bound to deepen and develop our own heritage, and it is very close to the old Slavic paganism. In that sense, I was deeply impressed by the work of Alexander Dugin "Metaphysics of Annunciation". It's a very deep insight into "the mystery of Christianity". From our viewpoint, regardless of the specific form, the key will be in the dichotomy of appolonian and dionysian concepts, this is what Nietzsche talked about; the dichotomy of light and dark Logos, the uranic and chthonic principles.
About the author:
Boris Nad, Serbian writer and publicist, was born in Vinkovci, Slavonia, in 1966. He studied in Zagreb and Belgrade, graduated from the University of Belgrade. Since 1994. Boris Nad published various essays and articles in diverse journals and periodicals.
Some of his most important works are:
Time of empires, (Beograd, „Rivel Ko”, 2002), geopolitical writings (with Introduction by Dragoš Kalajić)
Victor's feast, (Beograd, „Žagor”, 2005), short epic science-fiction novel
New Ithaca, (Niš, „Unus mundus“ – Niški kulturni centar, 2007), selection of essays, poetry, short stories and short prose
Silent gods, (Beograd, „Žagor“, 2008.), short prose
The Return of the myth (Idea of the Center, New Ithaca, Argonauts, Symbols of Hyperborea), (Niš, Niški kulturni centar, 2010), selection of essays and (geo)political writings, poetry, short prose and stories
Post-apokalypse, (Niš, „Unus mundus“, br. 38, Niški kulturni centar, 2011), essay
Ultima Thule, (Niš, „Unus mundus“, br. 40, Niški kulturni centar, 2011), stories