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Populism into the Twenty‐first Century

  • Torcuato S. Di Tella
Extract

GHIŢA IONESCU'S HOMELAND IS ONE OF THE MOST TROUBLED NATIONS in Europe. Its wounded national feeling has produced the strangest ideological combinations, mixing freely a fascist past with nostalgia for Ceausescu, as is the case with the Vatra Romaneasca (Romanian Homeland) movement, or the editors of the influential journal Romania Mare, adept at denouncing the ‘international Judaeo- Zionist-capitalist’ plot. One of the main theoreticians of corporatism, as is well known, was Mihail Manoilescu, while another Romanian intellectual, Ilie Badescu, created the ‘protocronist’ school of sociology, bent on documenting cultural and scientific findings in Romania which had anticipated later Western European developments. This approach was adopted officially during the Ceausescu regime, and now inspires some extreme right-wing groups which espouse a radical nationalist ideology. One of them, the Party of the National Right, admits to not being democratic, but compensates for this by proclaiming its ‘demophilia’, that is, its love for the people, a concept created by Petre Tutea, an admirer of the Iron Guard interwar fascist movement.

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References
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1 Ionescu, Ghita, Communism in Romania, 1944–1962 London, 1964, reprint, Westport, Conn., Greenwood Press, 1976 ; Gilberg, Trond., Nationalism and Communism in Romania, Boulder, Co., Westview Press, 1990 ; Verdery, Catherine., National Ideology under Socialism: Identity and Cultural Politics in Ceausescu's Romania, Berkeley, University of California Press, 1991 ; Shafir, Michael., ‘Growing Political Extremism in Romania’, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Research Report. 2 04 1993 , pp. 1825 .

2 Ionescu, Ghita and Gellner, Ernest (eds), Populism: Its Meanings and National Characteristics, London, Weidenfeld & Nicolson, 1969 . Regarding the prospects for change in the communist regimes, see Ghita’s, early and prophetically titled The Breakup of the Soviet Empire, London, 1965, reprint, Westport, Conn., Greenwood Press, 1984.

3 Conniff, Michael L., Latin American Populism in Comparative Perspective, Albuquerque, University of New Mexico Press, 1982 .

4 See Gadotti, Moacir. and Pereira, Otaviano., Pra qué PT: origem, projeto e consolidaçao do Partido dos Trabalhadores, Sāo Paulo, Cortez Editora, 1989 .

5 Croan, Melvin., ‘Is Latin America the Future of Eastern Europe?’, Problems of Communism, 41:3, 0506 1992 .

6 Hankiss, Elernér, Hongrie: diagnostiques. Essai en pathologie sociale, Paris, Georg Editeur, 1990 .

7 See Wiatr, Jerzy., The Soldier and the Nation: The Role of the Military in Polish Politics, 1918–1985, Boulder, Co., Westview Press, 1988 ; Volgyes, Iván., The Political Reliability of the Warsaw Pact Armies: The Southern Tier, Durham, NC, Duke University Press, 1982 ; Rice, Condoleezza, The Soviet Union and the Czech Army, 1948–1983: Uncertain Allegiance, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1984 ; Nelson, Daniel L. (ed.), Soviet Allies: The Warsaw Pact and the Issue of Reliability, Boulder, Co., Westview Press, 1984 .

8 Lowenthal, Abraham F., The Peruvian Experiment: Continuity and Change under Military Rule, Princeton, Princeton University Press, 1975 .

9 McClintock, Cynthia., ‘Why Peasants Rebel: The Case of Peru’s Sendero Luminoso’, World Politics, Vol. 37, No. 1, 10. 1984 ; Klein, Herbert., Bolivia: The Evolution of a Multi‐ethnic Society, New York, Oxford University Press, 1982 ; Chin, Henk E. and Buddingh, Hands., Surinam: Politics, Economics and Society, London, Frances Pinter, 1987 .

10 For contrasting views on the role of conservative parties, see Chalmers, Douglas, Borón, Atilio and de Souza, Maria do Carmo Campelo, (eds), The Right and Democracy in Latin America, New York, Praeger, 1991 .

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