The Multipolar Revolution: Syncretic Perspectives – Part I

Small Logo By: Jafe Arnold

From the Indo-Europeans to the ‘New World’

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old-english-calligraphy-alphabet-the world’s diversity of cultures has successfully defied the “globalization” of the Atlanticist, Liberal, unipolar “End of History” scenario proclaimed in the 1990’s. It is increasingly recognized both de facto and de jure that we are in transition towards a multipolar world order. The historic drama of this process is not always appreciated for what it is: we are on the way towards a world order promising unprecedented cooperation between civilizations based on the refusal of  hegemony of any one state, ideology, and identity. From the point of view of international relations, political science, geopolitics, and indeed the history of civilizations, this is a revolution.

In the modern world, we also often forget to appreciate the original meaning of words. “Revolution” is usually etymologically traced back to Latin revolutio, or “the act of revolving”, meaning a radical change aimed at restoring an original position in a cycle. However, “revolution” as a word and concept can be pursued not only even further back to Greek verbs meaning “to wind around” or “to enfold,” but the Latin, Greek, and other Indo-European linguistic expressions of “revolution” all trace back to the original Proto-Indo-European root welh- or kʷel- literally meaning “to turn” or “to rotate” but more often than not connoting “surrounding.” The original Indo-European term encompasses the origins of the concept of “revolution” as it would be derived in all the complex understandings of the Indo-Europeans’ descendant languages and cultures, among which Greek and Latin are prominent European cases. [1]

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The Indo-European homeland and linguistic evolution a la Anthony

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Indo-European languages in 21st century Eurasia

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Global distribution of Indo-European languages by state

The original Proto-Indo-European set of terms that would yield “revolution” referred to the most important aspects of life for the original Indo-European people: war (the military maneuver of “surrounding” an enemy, which vanquishes a threat and therefore “returns” the cosmic balance), pastoral life (the cycle of herding and grazing livestock, the cattle cult sacrifice cycle in their cosmogony), and the celestial-divine (the gods “surrounding” men with powers, protection, tribulations, the celestial cycles, etc.). The Proto-Indo-European kʷel- is also the root for the word “wheel”, or kʷékʷlos, which was of supreme importance to the Proto-Indo-Europeans’ view of the cosmos and their historical movement: the wheel or circle of the cosmos and life is predominant in Indo-European mythologies and it was thanks to the Indo-Europeans’ domestication of the horse (another linguistic correspondence: h₁éḱwos) and their utilization of wheel and chariot technology that allowed them to spread across the globe, with which they left a primordially and still relatively similar cultural and linguistic sphere stretching from the European peninsula to the Indian sub-continent (hence the 19th century term “Indo-Europeans”). These are not merely intriguing linguistic observations: the Indo-European conceptual and linguistic roots of “revolution” have informed many of the earth’s cultures’ understanding of such complex concepts as radical change, “revolving order”, or “restoration.” That these roots or significations have been denied or lost does not mean that they do not exist. 

What does this have to do with multipolarity? Multipolarity, as a revolution, is of both the past and the future: it is a radical negation of Atlanticist, Liberal, unipolar modernity in favor of a new international system and it is a restoration of or return to the world’s natural diversity of civilizations, identities, and ideologies. Continue reading

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CSS participates in conference: “History and Perspectives of Cooperation between Slavic Countries”

SealBy: Jafe Arnold – CSS liaison to Poland

CSS participates in conference: “History and Perspectives of Cooperation between Slavic Countries”

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Photo credit: Tomasz Trump

On December 10th in Wroclaw, Poland, the Association for Poland-East Cooperation hosted an interdisciplinary conference entitled “History and Perspectives of Cooperation between Slavic Countries.” Organized by the Grunwald Patriotic Workers Union, the conference brought together a diverse range of scholars, activists, and organizations to discuss the many facets of historical and contemporary ties between the Slavic states of Eurasia. The Center for Syncretic Studies was represented at the event by its Poland-based researcher and liaison Jafe Arnold.

The broad subject of the conference was matched by the equally broad spectrum of participating individuals and organizations. The organizing group, the Grunwald Patriotic Workers Union, is itself one of the handful of initiatives that have appeared on the Polish political scene over the past few years with the aim of bridging the gap between “right” and “left” in approaching the issues of national sovereignty and social justice in Poland. Grunwald’s representatives opened the conference specifically by referencing the need to approach the history and prospects of cooperation between Slavic peoples from a variety of perspectives. The end goal was declared to be the constructive affirmation of Poland’s past with an eye to collaborating on envisioning a sovereign future for the country currently subject to US-NATO occupation. Grunwald was joined in this endeavor by representatives of the political party Zmiana, the Center for Sustainable Development, the Association for Poland-East Cooperation, the Faithful to Sovereign Poland Association, Falanga, the Center for Syncretic Studies, the All Slavs Committee, and a number of guest professors from Polish universities.  Continue reading

The Russian Spring in Donbass

War and Statecraft in the Donetsk People’s Republic 

flag-novorossiya2.jpg By: Dmitry Muza – translated by Jafe Arnold

Dmitry Evgenyevich Muza is a doctor of philosophical sciences, a correspondent-member of the Crimean Academy of Sciences, a professor at the Department of Sociology at Donetsk State University of Management, a professor at the Department of International Relations and Foreign Policy at Donetsk National University, and the co-chairman of the Izborsk Club of Novorossiya (Donetsk People’s Republic)

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Screen Shot 2016-09-02 at 20.57.26y including the processes and event-related phenomenon “Russian Spring,” “war,” and “statecraft” in the title of this article, I am by no means implying any kind of intellectual provocation or attempting to realize a political order. On the contrary, the intended position here can be associated with the existence of millions of people who have in one way or another engaged (during wartime) in the creation of a completely distinct region, a will and fate of more than just one century tied to the fate of the Russian world.

Proposed below is a feasible analysis of three interrelated events: the “Russian Spring” in Donbass, the war [1], and attempts at state-building, each of which deserves separate reflection and evaluation from the position of both an “internal” and “external” observation.

All of these factors, I believe, are tied to an immanent logic which can be articulated as a centripetal process of reintegrating Donbass into the Russian civilizational, i.e., Russian-Eurasian, Orthodox space.[2]

In addition, a general exposition of what is happening in Donbass and with Donbass today requires some clarification of the region’s pre-crisis state. Such a clarification concerns both the recent and distant past directly associated with the region under consideration. By going through these layers of history, I intend to show the composition of Donbass in relation to the larger Russian civilizational space. 

First of all, it is necessary to recall that the now forgotten regional referendum of March 27th, 1995 in the Donetsk and Lugansk regions was intended to restore socio-economic ties with the Russian Federation and enshrine the Russian language as a regional one in functional norms. Of no small importance is that this referendum was consistent with the Ukrainian law “On all-Ukrainian and local referendums,” but was still ignored by Ukrainian authorities. Secondly, it was Russian Donbass that accounted for the electoral base of Presidents Kuchma and Yanukovych who flirted with the ideas of closer integration with Russia and the Russian language (granting it a special status). Thirdly, there were considerable expectations surrounding the post-Maidan congress in Northern Donetsk in November of 2004 which expressed the region’s collective will on establishing genuine federalization, including economic autonomy for the Donetsk and Lugansk regions. Fourthly, it is important to emphasize that the significance of the recent “Euroregion Donbass” project which involved the Rostov, Belgorod, and Voronezh regions from Russia and the Donetsk and Lugansk provinces from Ukraine entailed tightening their cooperation, albeit with European investments and guidance. Continue reading

The New-Old Left vs. the “Theater of the Absurd”

An Interview with Czech Communist Ideologist Josef Skala – Part 2

Screen Shot 2016-08-02 at 23.17.54 By: Alexander Gegalchiy – translated by Jafe Arnold

Based out of Prague, Czech Republic, Alexander Gegalchiy is President of the International Russian Award Foundation, an organization dedicated to supporting and awarding Russian and Rusyn authors for their contributions to the Transcarpathian heritage of the Russian World. He is also a member of the editorial board of “Western Rus”, a publishing project whose aim is the research and promotion of the concept of the “Russian World” specifically as it applies to Byelorussian identity.  

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Foreword from CSS Research Fellow and Analyst Jafe Arnold:

502377n the below, second installment in CSS’ new series exploring syncretic-oriented themes among the “new-old” left, particularly in the Czech Republic, we are joined by Alexander Gegalchiy, who in July 2016 posed a series of hot topics to Czech communist ideologist Dr. Josef Skala to provide his original commentary. The resultant monologue contains a number of pertinent undertones, including a critique of the modern “left”, an approach to a socialist agenda from both a “pan-European” and “sovereigntist” perspective, a recognition of the changing superstructural manifestation of proletarian issues to involve formerly “reactionary” formations of the “right,” as well as a hint that so-called progressive notions as free migration and multiculturalism in fact have quite different origins and consequences for anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist motives.

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Czech Communists for Donbass and Multipolarity

An Interview with Czech Communist Ideologist Josef Skala – Part 1

Small Logo By: Dr. Eduard Popov – translated by Jafe Arnold

Eduard Popov is a Rostov State University graduate with a PhD in history and philosophy. In 2008, he founded the Center for Ukrainian Studies at the Southern Federal University of Russia in Rostov-on-Don. From 2009-2013, he was the founding head of the Black Sea-Caspian Center of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies, an analytical institute of the Presidential Administration of Russia. In June 2014, Popov headed the establishment of the Representative Office of the Donetsk People’s Republic in Rostov-on-Don. He has actively participated in humanitarian aid efforts in his native Donbass and is a key contributor to various Donbass media, such as the Lugansk-based Cossack Media Group. 

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Foreword from CSS Director Joaquin Flores: 

old-english-calligraphy-alphabet-the Center for Syncretic Studies finds great satisfaction in providing the following eye-opening interview, conducted by our esteemed colleague, Dr. Popov of the Russian Federation, who asked a number of pertinent questions to Dr. Josef Skala, a prominent communist leader in the Czech Republic. What the CSS has noted in a number of articles on related subjects is that there has been a steady return to the fundamental principles of worker socialism, while at the same time developing a syncretism with other socio-political phenomenon which previous generations would have, perhaps then correctly, identified as alien-class forces. Nevertheless, the further development of capitalism in the late 20th century and early 21st century has increasingly proletarianized social strata that previously were excluded from the valorization process. But today, these social strata are proletarianized, a process that has advanced in direct proportion to the total subsumption of other facets of society by capital, which may also be described as the commodification of all spheres of life.

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