Patterns of Conversion in the Radical Conservative Tradition
Presentation | September 19 | 12-1 p.m. | Institute for the Study of Societal Issues, Duster Room
Eliah Bures, CRWS Visiting Scholar
It has become our practice to ask visiting scholars to present their work in an informal setting near the beginning of their stay. This allows them to meet the members of our community, introduce their work, receive feedback, and make meaningful connections that may help orient and facilitate their research. We hope that those of you who are interested in Dr. Bures' topic will join us for this informal gathering. Feel free to bring your lunch.
"My work offers a new interpretation of the development of right-wing ideology in the 20th century. I argue that fascism, though defeated on the battlefield in WWII, survived the war by adapting to changing times and reinventing itself as an intellectual and cultural movement. Faced after 1945 with a climate unfavorable to right-wing mass politics, the far rights writers and thinkers regrouped as a countercultural network of defiant outsiders. Organized through journals and institutes, they worked to cultivate followers and shift cultural narratives. My research uncovers how radical conservative intellectuals came to understand themselves in countercultural terms. I focus on the far rights emotional community and on the ways friendship has shaped its social imagination. Friendship has long been central to right-wing thought, appearing in its attraction to elitist cliques, male bonding, and the friend-foe distinction as the essence of politics. Friendship proved no less crucial to right-wing intellectual counterculture after 1945, providing solidarity and mutual understanding to those who hungered for belonging, yet felt out of step with the times."