By Charles Clover
in accordance with wide study and dozens of interviews with Putin’s shut advisers, this quietly explosive tale may be crucial examining for an individual fascinated with Russia’s earlier century, and its future.
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Paperback: 312 pages
writer: Wiley-Blackwell; Reprint variation (January eight, 1991)
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Additional info for Black Wind, White Snow: The Rise of Russia’s New Nationalism
Many of the authors here would take grave exception to being labelled ‘nationalist’, which in Russian is akin to ‘racist’; however, in English it has a wider meaning which I find appropriate. I have used ‘nationalism’ as a broad category to represent the civilizational identity that Eurasianism proposes. Like nationalism, it suggests a common culture and political boundaries, and may be used to justify conquest and irredentism. While it is true that Eurasia is itself a ‘multinational’ unit, made up of Tatars, Russians and Yakuts (among others), its concept is in essence an imperial form of Russian nationalism, and its members have all joined in a Russian nationalist war of conquest in eastern Ukraine.
5 Truth and proof are barely criteria in the competition among memes – indeed Dawkins invented the theory to explain the persistence of religion in the face of science. Far more important is what US comic Stephen Colbert might call ‘truthiness’: the inherent catchiness of ideas like ‘belief in God’ or ‘war on terror’, spread without very much conscious action or explanatory power, or even understanding of their meaning. This is what seems to explain the success of one of the most powerful memes today: nationalism, which has reshaped the world since it captured the imagination of nineteenth-century Europe, starting the most destructive wars in history and ending another global conflict – the Cold War – without a shot being fired.
Kremlinologists watch to see who is seated next to whom. Journalists hope Putin will say something threatening or off colour (which he often does), and this will become a Twitter hashtag within seconds. And in December 2012, everyone was watching to see if Putin, who had limped noticeably during a meeting with Israeli President Shimon Peres and who was rumoured to be in ill health, would make it through the speech. He did, but almost no one was paying attention to the most important thing: a fleeting reference to an obscure Russianized Latin term, which was flung into the speech at about minute 5: ‘I would like all of us to understand clearly that the coming years will be decisive,’ said Putin, vaguely hinting, as he did very frequently, at some great, massive, future calamity.
Black Wind, White Snow: The Rise of Russia’s New Nationalism by Charles Clover