After reading “Debunking Putin’s Newest Myth” by Alexander Yanov, PhD, and with all my respect and admiration for this very well known historian of Russian nationalisms:
Although quite brilliant and eloquent, I believe it is not incisive and daring enough in debunking Putin’s newest myth. It takes a very conservative approach, perhaps letting a Western traditional philosophy baggage and inclination take the part of pure reason and belief, which is usually needed, in equal parts, to fight a political/philosophical quarrel.
Of the two “counter arguments” Yanov makes of Spengler’s ideas, the first one is the simple, and comfortable, “tradition”. Which has never been a good argument for anything deep. It may convince many people, and it may sound “common sense”. But there is no real merit in that argument. As a matter of fact, it is dangerously misleading, for if followed to its most dire consequences, it leads directly from Aristotle to Hegel, and from Hegel to Kant, one step short of Aynd Rand, and the shiny but deadly Objetivism that seems to engulf all aspects of politics in the Western world.
The second one, a much more interesting and well researched approach, falls short (perhaps out of time-space constraints) of the implications it seeks. Sure, in the debate culture-civilization, as portrayed by Huntington, there is SO much to add and polish that it could be endless, but an omission does not warrant an impossibility.
Personally, I believe Civilization has an “organizational / political” meaning to which Culture does not refer to (which regards more the subjective and individual achievement, although collectively considered).
Then again, what do I know?
I am looking forward to be able to discuss this nuances with him.
You must be logged in to post a comment.