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Friday, April 26, 2019

New work on Dugin and conspiracy theory

The Russian scholar Victor Shnirelman has published a chapter on “Alexander Dugin: Between eschatology, esotericism, and conspiracy theory” in the Handbook of Conspiracy Theory and Contemporary Religion, edited by Asbjørn Dyrendal, David G. Robertson and Egil Asprem (Brill, 2018), pp. 443-460.

Shnirelman starts by describing Dugin as “a remarkable figure in the dull Russian political scene,” which is certainly true. He then looks at Dugin’s writings on conspiracy from 1991 to the present, paying special attention to the changing roles ascribed to the Jews, and showing how Dugin’s views on conspiracy reflect his eschatology and thus, by extension, his Traditionalism. The Kali Yuga, after all, can become a version of the end times. Conspiracy, argues Shnirelman, is a “contemporary, secularized version” of eschatology. "Whereas eschatology can be satisfied with an obscure image of... 'dark forces,' conspiracy demands an image of more definite enemies."

Similar ground is covered by Shnirelman's “Эзотерика Александра Дугина: возведение моста между эсхатологией и конспирологией” (The esotericism of Alexander Dugin: Building a bridge between eschatology and conspiracy), Форум новейшей восточноевропейской истории и культуры 15 (29), no. 1-2 (2018), pp. 29-50, which is itself a development of “Александр Дугин: возведение моста между эсхатологией и конспирологией” (Alexander Dugin: Building a bridge between eschatology and conspiracy), Государство, религия, церковь в России и за рубежом 34, no. 4 (2016), pp. 194–221.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Of note also in this general connection is Charles Upton's recent tome Dugin against Dugin: A Traditionalist Critique of the Fourth Political Theory.