Imperium: The Philosophy of History and Politics

Imperium: The Philosophy of History and Politics is a 1948 book by Francis Parker Yockey, using the pen name Ulick Varange, that argues for a pan-European fascist regime.[1][2][3][4] Imperium presents an antisemitic theory of history,[5] asserting that the Holocaust was a hoax,[6][7] and is dedicated to Adolf Hitler.[5]

Imperium: The Philosophy of History and Politics
Imperium The Philosophy of History and Politics.jpg
AuthorFrancis Parker Yockey
CountryIreland
LanguageEnglish
SubjectPhilosophy of history
Political philosophy
Publication date
1948

InfluencesEdit

Yockey adopted the ideas of German philosopher of history Oswald Spengler in Imperium,[8] although Yockey's explicit antisemitism differentiated him from Spengler.[9] Spengler's The Decline of the West was the most important single source.[10][11] Yockey's views on the role of the state drew from the Friend–Enemy Thesis of Nazi political theorist Carl Schmitt (whom Yockey has been accused of plagiarizing).[12][13] Yockey heavily drew on the great man theory of Thomas Carlyle, seeing the creative ability of heroic individuals as a vehicle for progress.[14]

SummaryEdit

Following Spengler, Yockey identified eight "high cultures" in world history, which he saw as spiritual superorganisms which impress humans into their service.[15] He argued that these cultures have their own souls which determine their religious expression, science, art forms, politics and morality through succeeding life phases of birth, growth, maturity, fulfillment of destiny, and death.[16][17] He described races as "spirituo-biological" entities, raw material for cultural expression and history, but criticized strictly biological racial theories as crude.[18][16][9]

Yockey wrote that the fulfillment of the Western high culture was threatened by "cultural pathology", including what he claimed were interrelated sicknesses of "culture-parasitism", "culture-retardation" and "culture-distortion".[19] He alleged that Jews were most harmful to the West because he saw them as aggravating its organic "culture-crisis", which he associated with the rise of materialism and rationalism since 1750.[20][21][5][22] He wrote that America was more susceptible to "culture-distortion" than any other Western nation because, he argued, America as a colonial offshoot of Western culture was founded on an ideology of rationalism and materialism, lacking the spiritual depth of the "mother-culture" of Europe.[23]

Believing that each life phase of high culture has its unique "Spirit of the Age", Yockey considered fascism and Nazism to be expressions of this spirit in the new epoch.[15][24][9] According to him, Hitler set the West toward a proper fulfillment of its destiny as a unified empire, while in order to stop it America sided with Russia, which Yockey saw as a distinct from the Western culture. Yockey alleged that the postwar Nuremberg trials were "show trials" directed by these "extra-European forces". He denied the Holocaust (although he reportedly praised it in private),[25] and claimed that photographic evidence of the Nazis' gas chambers was faked.[5][26]

PublicationEdit

Yockey wrote Imperium at an inn in Brittas Bay, Ireland.[5] The book spanned 600 pages in two volumes.[27] In Yockey's pseudonym, Ulick Varange, Ulick was meant to be a Danish-Irish name, and Varange was a reference to Norsemen.[28]

Yockey invited the British fascist Oswald Mosley to publish Imperium in his name, but Mosley refused.[29] Publication was financed by the Mosleyites Guy Chesham, Peter Huxley-Blythe and Yockey's mistress Baroness Alice von Pflugl.[30][7] A thousand copies of the first volume, and 200 copies of the second volume, were printed in London by Westropa Press.[7]

The American far-right activist and antisemite Willis Carto acquired the rights to Imperium from Westropa in 1948.[31][32] The 1962 edition, published after Yockey's suicide in jail in 1960, included an introduction by Carto,[32] along with Revilo P. Oliver's positive review.[33][third-party source needed]

ReceptionEdit

Imperium has been called one of the most influential antisemitic books since Hitler's Mein Kampf.[32][26] It has influenced various far-right activists worldwide, including supporters of a "Eurasian" racial imperium in Europe and Russia.[6] It influenced the American neo-Nazi occultist James H. Madole, the racial Odinist Else Christensen, the fascist Christian Bouchet and the British neo-Nazi David Myatt.[34] The neo-Nazi Italian hermetic philosopher Julius Evola praised it.[28] But according to academic Jeffrey Kaplan, some others on the far right considered Imperium the "impenetrable ramblings of a madman".[35]

The book's ideology was adopted by Willis Carto for the National Youth Alliance and some members of groups such as the Liberty Lobby (founded by Carto) and the American Independent Party.[36] Liberty Lobby and its spinoffs promoted Imperium as the Mein Kampf of postwar Nazism.[27] The book was also sold for several years through the catalog of David Duke, the former Ku Klux Klan grand wizard.[37]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Potok, Mark (2018-08-22). "To Russia With Love: Why Southern U.S. Extremists Are Mad About Vladimir Putin". The Daily Beast. Retrieved 2022-04-24.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link): "In 1948, an American ideologue named Francis Parker Yockey wrote a book promoting pan-European fascism that saw the Soviet Union as less of a threat to Europe than the United States was. By the late 1950s, Yockey was suggesting the USSR could help "free" Europe from U.S. domination, according to Shekhovstov’s new book, Russia and the Western Far Right."
  2. ^ Mostrom, Anthony (2020-08-08). "America's "Mein Kampf": Francis Parker Yockey and "Imperium"". Los Angeles Review of Books. Retrieved 2022-01-05.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 75.
  4. ^ Kaplan, Jeffrey (2000). Encyclopedia of White Power: A Sourcebook on the Radical Racist Right. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 42. ISBN 978-0-7425-0340-3.
  5. ^ a b c d e Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 76.
  6. ^ a b Mostrom, Anthony (2017-05-13). "The Fascist and the Preacher: Gerald L. K. Smith and Francis Parker Yockey in Cold War–Era Los Angeles". Los Angeles Review of Books. Retrieved 2022-05-01.
  7. ^ a b c Lee, Martin A. (2000). The Beast Reawakens: Fascism's Resurgence from Hitler's Spymasters to Today's Neo-Nazi Groups and Right-Wing Extremists. New York. pp. 94–98, 157. ISBN 978-1-135-28124-3. OCLC 858861623.
  8. ^ Reilly 2010
  9. ^ a b c Lee 2013, p. 96.
  10. ^ Reilly 2010
  11. ^ Mulhall 2020, pp. 110
  12. ^ Coogan, Kevin (1999). Dreamer of the day : Francis Parker Yockey and the postwar fascist international. Mazal Holocaust Collection. Brooklyn, N.Y.: Autonomedia. ISBN 1-57027-039-2. OCLC 38884251.
  13. ^ Mulhall, Joe (2020). British Fascism After the Holocaust: From the Birth of Denial to the Notting Hill Riots 1939–1958. Taylor & Francis. ISBN 9780429840258. p. 111
  14. ^ Rose 2021, p. 67-79.
  15. ^ a b Gardell 2003, pp. 51.
  16. ^ a b Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 260.
  17. ^ Rose, Matthew (2021). A World after Liberalism: Philosophers of the Radical Right. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300263084. p. 67-79
  18. ^ Maibaum 2003, pp. 15.
  19. ^ Gardell 2003, p. 169.
  20. ^ Gardell 2003, pp. 51–52, 170.
  21. ^ Reilly 2010.
  22. ^ Coogan, Kevin (2019). 'Lost Imperium? Yockey: 20 years later.' Review of Yockey: A Fascist Odyssey by Kerry Bolton (PDF). Lobster Magazine. p. 6.
  23. ^ Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 260–261.
  24. ^ Rose 2003, pp. 75–76.
  25. ^ Lee, Martin A. (2011). The beast reawakens. New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0-203-95029-6. OCLC 1086431548.
  26. ^ a b Atkins, Stephen E. (2009). Holocaust denial as an international movement. Westport, Conn.: Praeger. p. 147. ISBN 978-0-313-34539-5. OCLC 624337327.
  27. ^ a b Lee, Martin A. (2000). The Beast Reawakens: Fascism's Resurgence from Hitler's Spymasters to Today's Neo-Nazi Groups and Right-Wing Extremists. New York. pp. 94, 157. ISBN 978-1-135-28124-3. OCLC 858861623.
  28. ^ a b Steiger, Brad and Steiger, Sherry Hanson (2006). Conspiracies and Secret Societies: The Complete Dossier. Canton Township, Michigan: Visible Ink Press. p. 511. ISBN 978-1-57859-174-9.
  29. ^ Sonabend, Daniel (2019). The 43 Group. Verso. ISBN 978-1-78873-327-4. OCLC 1129451450.
  30. ^ Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 77: "In 1949 Yockey's Mosleyite circle included Guy Chesham, Peter Huxley-Blythe and Baroness von Pflugl, who financed the publication of Imperium."
  31. ^ Durham, Martin (2007-11-13). White Rage: The Extreme Right and American Politics. Routledge. pp. 25, 26. ISBN 978-1-134-23181-2.
  32. ^ a b c Mostrom, Anthony (2020-08-08). "America's "Mein Kampf": Francis Parker Yockey and "Imperium"". Los Angeles Review of Books. Retrieved 2022-01-05.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  33. ^ Oliver, Revilo P. (1962). "Revilo P. Oliver › Introduction to Imperium". Noontide Press. Archived from the original on 21 November 2018. Retrieved 2022-01-05.
  34. ^ Goodrick-Clarke 2002, pp. 5, 74, 76, 216, 221, 223, 226, 261.
  35. ^ Kaplan, Jeffrey (2000). Encyclopedia of White Power: A Sourcebook on the Radical Racist Right. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 42. ISBN 978-0-7425-0340-3.
  36. ^ Maibaum 2003, pp. 17
  37. ^ "John William King Quotes Francis Parker Yockey in Statement About Hate Crime". Southern Poverty Law Center. June 13, 2000. Retrieved 2022-05-05.

SourcesEdit