Additional Notes to Chapter 12


Additional Note  1
By 1978, the Lenin Library held 17 of Guénon's books, 6 of Evola's, 14 of Burckhardt's, 12 of Schuon's, and 38 of Coomaraswamy's. Although some Traditionalist works had been acquired in the 1930s and 1940s, most were acquired between 1968 and 1976. The 1930 edition of Guénon's Orient et occident , for example, was acquired (or at least catalogued) in 1968. Strangely, the Lenin Library holds a copy of Evola's Dadaist poem, La parole obscure du paysage intérieur , which was printed in 1920 in a limited edition of 99 numbered copies. This was acquired in 1942. Data from an examination of the catalogs in the Lenin Library (by then renamed the Russian State Library) in 1999.

It is not clear why the Lenin Library was at this time busily acquiring authors who (with the exception of Coomaraswamy) would have been rejected by many Western university libraries; one possibility is that an independent intellectual unconnected with the circle of Golovin (and thus unknown to my informants) was at that time working in the Library and was in a position to indulge his personal interests.

Additional Note  2
In the view of one such intellectual (Boris Falikov) who taught at US and Russian universities after Perestroika, the fact that these levels of learning were arrived at without intellectual supervision often resulted in a lack of rigor and discipline, and might give rise to surprising lacunae.

Additional Note  3
Stepanov was interested in both the work of Gurdjieff and in the 'non-Islamic' Sufism which had been established in the West by Inayat Khan (1882-1927) and then popularized by Idries Shah (1924-96). Stepanov remained in correspondence with Graves, whom he met during a visit by Graves to Moscow . (Haljand Udam, email correspondence, March-June 2000). A second non-Traditionalist Sufi of sorts was Yuri Stefanov, an "underground writer," whose interest in Sufism led him to name his son Al-Haq (an unusual name: al-Haq [Truth] is an epithet usually reserved for God Himself; Abd al-Haq [Slave of the Truth] is the normal name) but did not prevent him from drinking prodigious quantities of vodka (Falikov, interview).

Additional Note  4
Stepanov mentioned Golovin, but never introduced Udam to him. Udam did meet Jamal, but only later, in Estonia in 1980. This meeting happened in a circle established there by Michael Tamm (1911-  ), an Estonian who had developed an interest in esotericism in Western Europe , where he spent 1940-56.

Additional Note  5
Mamleyev had published Zhivaya smert' [A living death] in Paris and New York in 1986, and Shatuny with the same émigré publisher two years later. This second novel was reprinted in Russia in 1996 ( Moscow : Terra). Mamleyev continued to write and publish in Russia after 1991. A collection of his short stories has appeared in English: Yuri Mamleyev, The Sky Above Hell and Other Stories (New York: Taplinger, 1980).

Additional Note  6
It is hard to date the short but important era of Perestroika, which was initiated by speeches of Mikhail Gorbachev (General Secretary of the Communist Party from 1985) at the 27th Party Congress, in early 1986. It ended with the attempted coup against Gorbachev in August 1991, and had become fully established by 1988: the 1989 elections to the USSR Congress of People's Deputies have been described as the first meaningful elections in the Soviet Union since 1917. See Alexander Tsipko, " Russia 's Difficult Path Toward Democracy: Moral and Ideological Preconditions for Overcoming the Legacies of the Communist System in Russia ." ( International Review of Sociology 7, 1997: 267-318).

Additional Note  7
In 1987, several hundred supporters of Pamyat' leader Dmitry Vasilyev (c.1946-  ) marched on the Moscow City Soviet demanding official recognition of their 'association.' Its leaders, declared the Soviet news agency Tass immediately afterwards, had "replaced true patriotism with noisy fanaticism, hysteria and fidgety suspiciousness." "Izvestia on the Organization Pamyat," Tass report, June 2, 1987.

Additional Note  8
Yakovlev's view is plausible, and he might be regarded as a reliable source since he was a close associate of Mikhail Gorbachev during Perestroika, of which he was one of the main architects (he joined the Politburo in June 1987). As one of the principal opponents and targets of Pamyat', however, and as a vocal denouncer of Russian "Fascism" from at least 1972, he cannot be regarded as a neutral observer. Yakovlev was working in the Propaganda Department of the Central Committee of the CPSU when, in 1972, he published an article on the dangers of "nationalism, great-power chauvinism and anti-Semitism." This article was not well received, and as a result Yakovlev was transferred into honorable exile as Soviet ambassador to Canada. Editor's note, Current Digest of the Post-Soviet Press , July 22, 1998.

Additional Note  9
The nature of Pamyat''s anti-Zionism, often regarded as thinly disguised anti-Semitism, is debatable. Political anti-Zionism had been respectable in the Soviet Union since Brezhnev; anti-Semitism was less respectable, and indeed illegal. In 1990, one member of Pamyat' (Konstantin Smirnov-Ostashvili) was sentenced by a Moscow court to two years' hard labor for inciting racial hatred, after which Vasilyev's anti-Zionist rhetoric declined somewhat. Oleg Kulish reported shortly after the conviction ("Pamyat Forgets the Jews," Kommersant 23, 1991: 13) that in the course of a three-hour speech to 1,500 followers on June 1, 1991, Vasilyev had used the words 'Jew' and 'Zionist' only once each. For the trial, see "Landmark anti-Semitism Conviction," UPI dispatch from Moscow, October 12, 1990.

Vasilyev claimed to an Israeli journalist that his anti-Zionism was directed not against Theodore Herzl's (Israeli) Zionism but against the Zionism "that seeks to obtain world domination"--the "aggressive" and covert Zionism of the successors of early Bolshevik Jews such as Trotsky, Sverdlov, Kamenev and Zinoviev. Anti-Semitism certainly existed, especially in the Leningrad branch of Pamyat', from which Vasilyev publicly distanced himself. Walter Ruby, "Of Russia, 'Memory,' and the Jews" [interview with Vasilyev], Jerusalem Post , March 7, 1989.

Additional Note  10
The confusion here visible between 'Soviet' and 'Russian' (whose state was the USSR?) is an indication of the crux of the problem: in the words of Alexander Tsipko, a political advisor to Gorbachev, "by the time perestroika began, Old Russia had already died. Russians at that time no longer had a specific national identification, culture, or world view." There is evidently some exaggeration in this statement, but it makes an important point. Although the anti-nationalist internationalism of early Bolshevism had been progressively watered down through Soviet history (especially, of course, under Stalin, who rehabilitated many Russian national symbols, from the Russian Orthodox Church to army uniforms on the Czarist model), being Russian had in important ways meanwhile been subsumed into being Soviet. As Soviet ideology was disassembled, it left Russians almost as uncertain about their national identity as they were about their political future. "Not one of the leaders of perestroika," later lamented Tsipko, "knew how to relate perestroika to Russian national history." Tsipko, "Russia's Difficult Path".

Additional Note  11
During the 1980s, Prokhanov had established himself as the leader of the "village prose" [ derevenskoi prozy ] movement, a literary movement which had emerged in the 1950s as the first post-Stalinist expression of Russian nationalism, and had become more radical during the 1960s. Arguing for a modernization of Russian nationalist ideology to make it "relevant to people who serve on nuclear submarines or sit in daily traffic jams." Yitzhak M. Brudny, Reinventing Russia: Russian Nationalism and the Soviet State, 1953-91 (Cambridge: Harvard UP, 1998), pp. 17-19, 155-56. Prokhanov became the leading figure in a group of writers based around a publishing house, Molodaya Gvardiya, and a literary journal, Nash Sovremennik [Our Contemporary]. This was the most important focus of intellectual opposition to Perestroika.

Additional Note  12
There is disagreement about the authorship of this document. Michael Specter ("Muse of Anti-Yeltsin Forces: He is Feared, Never Ignored," New York Times May 2, 1996: A1) reports that Prokhanov wrote it and Zyuganov signed it. Tsipko reports that Zyuganov initiated it and signed it ("Russia's Difficult Path"). Both are however agreed that Prokhanov and Zyuganov co-operated in its publication.

Additional Note  13
For example, he replaced Guénon's emphasis on metaphysical Unity with an emphasis on the "metaphysical" Trinity, reconciled to Biblical and Hindu cosmology, and argued that the insan al-kamil [perfect man, a Sufi concept] in the Orthodox tradition is not Jesus but Mary.

Additional Note  14
Leontyev wrote of the "cultural and political divide between the Byzantine world of hierarchy and the Western European idea of 'uniform simplicity'." Tsipko, "Russia's Difficult Path." His most important collection of essays was Vostok, Rossiya i Slavyanstvo [The East, Russia and Slavdom], 1885-86.

Additional Note  15
Notably Pyotr Nikolayevich Savitsky, Geograficheskiyi osobennosti Rossiyi [The Geographic Particularities of Russia] (1927). See especially Iskhod k Vostoku [Exodus to the East] and Yevraziystvo [Eurasianism]. Vinogradov, in Yelena Yakovich, "Kontinent in Moscow: Voice of Russian Culture" [Interview with Igor Vinogradov], Literaturnaya Gazeta July 22, 1992: 5.

Additional Note  16
In Germany it was used by Karl Haushofer (1869-1946), who founded a Zeitschridt für Geopolitik in 1924, and whose conception of the state as a living organism with a right to Lebensraum was taken up by the Nazi Party. Haushofer was a strong proponent of the need for a Russo-German alliance against the Atlantic world, at least until the German invasion of Russia in 1941. Shortly before his death, Mackinder was as a result rather unfairly blamed by some circles in England for having inspired the Second World War. Haushofer and his wife committed suicide in 1946 while under investigation for war crimes. See "Mackinder, Halford John" and "Haushofer, Karl," Encyclopedia Britannica .

Additional Note  17
Prokhanov's open opposition to Perestroika can be dated to May 1987, when his criticism of the liberal and Western inclination of Gorbachev's reforms was published in Literaturnaya Gazeta . His Patriots provided more sophisticated expression of ideas similar to those of Pamyat'. They can hardly, however, be seen as sister organizations: Pamyat', for example, was in 1990 described by a number of Patriots as a "provocation blown [up] out of proportion," an unimportant collection of "a few masquerade characters." For the views of the Patriots, see "Letter from the Writers of Russia to the USSR Supreme Soviet, the Russian Republic Supreme Soviet and the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union" ( Literaturnaya Rossiya , March 2, 1990: 2-4). For Pamyat', see Ruby, "Of Russia."

Additional Note  18
In return, much educated Arab public opinion saw the USSR as an essential counterbalance to the USA, and the USSR's stance against Israel was generally appreciated. There are probably few areas of the world where the demise of the USSR was regretted as much as it was in the Middle East.

Additional Note  19
Zhirinovsky's party has dominated the Duma Geopolitics Committee since its inception, and the Liberal Democrat chair of that committee on one occasion declared himself in favor of a Russian alliance with China against "Anglo-Saxon and Islamic influence." Alexander Lukin, "Russia's Image of China and Russian-Chinese Relations," East Asia 17 (1999): 5-39. It was the meteoric success of Zhirinovsky's ironically-named Liberal Democratic Party in December 1993 that first alerted many optimistic Westerners to the fact that post-Communist Russia was very different from, say, post-Communist Poland. Tsipko argues that many in the West were misled by superficial similarities between events in Moscow and in cities such as Prague and Warsaw into supposing that they were observing similar processes. In his view, they could hardly have been more different. The Liberal Democratic Party was originally the name of another party which Zhirinovsky had briefly chaired in 1990, before being expelled from it. His reaction was to found his own party, and take the name of the party which had expelled him.

Additional Note  20
Shenfield, Russian Fascism , points out that one would expect Eurasian theory to place Japan in the Atlantic bloc, given her geography and maritime history. He ascribes Dugin's favorable attitude to Japan to his view of Japan as "a country in which there still exist traditions and sacred values," and concludes that in a conflict between Eurasian and Traditionalist logic, Traditionalism has won.

Additional Note  21
This novel, first published in Russian in New York in 1976 (and later translated into English) is in form autobiographical, and describes the reactions of the Russian émigré who exchanges the honorable position of independent intellectual in his homeland for the position of alien in the West. Irrelevant to and ignored by America, the fictionalized Limonov is reduced to working as a waiter in a hotel where the security guard is a similarly reduced former Captain in the Soviet navy. Limonov's reaction is one of revolt: revolt against bourgeois America, if not against the Modern World in Evolian terms. Continuing the wider revolt characteristic of the independent intellectual, the fictionalized Limonov (whose wife has been seduced away from him by America's material delights) decides to experiment with homosexuality ( It's me, Eddie: A Fictional Memoir, London: Pan, 1983), passim. The amount of sex in Ya, Edichka is partly explained by Limonov's decision to use, in abundance, words which had never before appeared in print in Russian. In this respect, he may be compared to Mamleyev.

Additional Note  22
As the future "head of an all-Russian investigation bureau... [a proposed] additional entity designed to oversee the activity of other law-enforcement bodies, to promote a certain amount of competition, and to prevent corruption and abuse of power." Answering questions at a press conference, Limonov assured the public that his entity would be more like the FBI than Feliks Dzerzhinsky's Cheka, and possibly confused ethnic nationalists among Zhirinovsky's supporters by describing himself as half-Russian, half-Ukrainian, with some Abyssinian and Tartar blood. Ethnically-based nationalism, he explained, was not appropriate in a country like Russia.

Additional Note  23
Viktor Anpilov's "radical communist" Labor Russia and Russkoye Natsional'noye Yedinstvo [Russian National Unity], RNE, of Alexander Barkashov (1953-  ). Sergey Chernov, "Rock star turns his talents to helping extremists," St Petersburg Times September 26, 1995. This even though Barkashov seems to share some elements of a mystical-political approach with Dugin. In an interview with Zavtra in November 1998, Barkashov likened his party to a "closed religious order" and described Russian Orthodoxy as "the sum of Eurasian Nordic mysteries" (Sergei Borisov, "Fascists exploit Orthodox Language," Nezavisimaya Gazeta , February 3, 1999, translated by the Union of Councils for Soviet Jews and posted on ~ucsj/stories/020999/news/rne.shtml). Barkashov has been successful in building a sizeable and disciplined paramilitary following; he is however isolated from the important CPRF. William D Jackson, "Fascism, Vigilantism and the State," Problems of Post-Communism 46,1, January-February 1999: 34-42.

Additional Note  24
It was suggested by Falikov, a liberal, that Kuryokhin's participation in the National Bolshevik Party was a "mystification" which could not be "de-mystified" because of Kuryokhin's untimely death from heart paralysis in 1996. Given that Kuryokhin's support lasted for over a year and until his death (he gave a second concert with Limonov in Moscow in 1996, reported by Chernov March 19, 1996), this seems unlikely.

Additional Note  25
Elementy carried articles on Traditionalism, the Western European right, and various "alternative-mystical" questions. Following Dugin's split with Limonov, Elementy and Limonka remained with the National Bolshevik Party. In 1999 Dugin replaced them with a similar pair, a journal ( Miliy Angel [Dear Angel]) and a monthly newspaper, Yevraziyskoye Vtorzheniye [Eurasian Invasion]. The first two issues of Vtorzheniye were of 24 A4 pages; the third, repeating earlier arrangements, appeared as the final page of Prokhanov's Zavtra [Tomorrow], the successor to Den' [Today], which had been banned in the aftermath of the Yeltsin's use of armed force against a recalcitrant Duma in October 1993.

The contrast between Zavtra and Vtorzheniye is striking. The main headline of the August-September 1999 Zavtra , for example, was: "Yeltsin--thief. [Tatyana Borisovna] Dyachenko [Yeltsin's daughter]--thief?" Zavtra 's interior pages contained exposés of various Democratic political figures as American spies and/or Jewish agents, along with a feature on military aviation. Vtorzheniye , on the other hand, had a distinctly post-modern layout, carried a thought for the day from Emerson ("The hero is he who possesses an unmoving center") and led with "National Existentialism: The Body as Performance."

Additional Note  26

  • Geoperbeiskaya teoriya [Hyperborean Theory] (1993)
  • Konspirologia: nauka o zagovorakh, tainakh, obshestvakh i okkultnoi voine [Conspirology: The Science of Conspiracies, Secret Societies and Occult War] (1993)
  • Konservativaya revolutsiya [Conservative Revolution] (1994)
  • Tseli i zadachi nashei revolutsii [Goals and Tasks of our Revolution] (1995)
  • Krestoviy pokhod solntsa [Crusade of the Sun] (1996)
  • Metafisiki blagoivesti: pravoslavnyi esoterizm [Metaphysics of the Gospel: Orthodox Esotericism] (1996)
  • Misterii Yevraziy [Eurasian Mysteries] (1996)
  • Osnovi geopolitiki: geopoliticheskoye budushchee Rossii [Geopolitical Foundations: The Geopolitical Future of Russia] (1997)
  • Tampliere proletariata: Natsional-Bolshevizm i initsiatsia [Proletarian Templars: National Bolshevism and Initiation] (1997).

There is also one large-format illustrated tie-in with Dugin's Finis Mundi radio program, Konets sveta: eskhatologicheskaya traditsiya [The end of the world: Traditional Eschatology] (1997) and a reprint of three of Dugin's earlier works ( Absolyutnaya Rodina [Absolute Fatherland], Puti absolyuta , written during Perestroika, Metafisiki blagoivesti and Misterii Yevraziy ) in one volume (also 1997).

Additional Note  27
For example, a televised discussion between Dugin and a leading Orthodox theologian (Deacon Andrei Kuraev, formerly secretary of Patriarch Alexei II) was broadcast during the summer of 1999 (my thanks to Boris Falikov, who watched the discussion). Dugin also made a television series in 1993 with Yuri Vorob'ev, "Mysteries of the Century" (Shenfield, Russian Fascism ).

Additional Note  28
The biggest of these was Metaphysics, and included translations of Guénon's Crise du monde moderne and Evola's Heidnischer Imperialismus , as well as articles on figures ranging from Guénon and Evola to Yevgeny Golovin, Aleister Crowley, and Gustav Meyrink. The Politics section reprinted articles from Dugin's various print journals. The smallest section was Erotics, based on Evola's Metaphysics of Sex .

Additional Note  29
Niyazov entered public life in the early 1990s with the establishment of the Islamic Cultural Center of Russia, which soon became a nationwide educational and lobbying organization, and of which he became director. In 1995, Niyazov helped establish the Union of Muslims of Russia, a politically moderate body which aimed to secure Duma representation for Muslims. The Union of Muslims of Russia emphasized its commitment to the Russian state, cultivated good relations with the Patriarch, and portrayed itself as the continuation of the loyal Muslim representatives in pre-revolutionary dumas. Yelena Lebedeva, "Islamic Cultural Center Becomes the Eye of a Storm," Moscow News September 30, 1994, transcript of press conference on the results of the first congress of the Union of Muslims of Russia, September 6, 1995 (Federal Information Systems Corporation: Official Kremlin International News Broadcast), and Diana Rudakova and Yelena Dorofeyeva, "Russia's Moslem movement Refakh holds conference," ITAR-TASS News Agency wire report, March 4, 2000. In 1998, as the Union of Muslims of Russia began to fall apart, Niyazov established his own party, Refah [Welfare], named after Turkey 's successful Islamo-democratic party. One third of Refah's membership was expected to be non-Muslim, and perhaps one fifth to be Slav. This Eurasian identity, Niyazov told the press, was needed to stop Russia turning into another Yugoslavia . Muslims were, however, expected to constitute the party's electoral base: Niyazov referred to demographic predictions that within thirty years Muslims would make up 30% to 40% of the Russian Federation 's population. Alla Barakhova, " Russia 's Muslims Will Have a Eurasian Face: They Have Founded a Party Called Prosperity," Kommersant March 16, 2001, p. 2. Niyazov had never been associated with the Opposition, and he aligned Refah with the government, participating in the government-aligned Unity bloc in the Duma, and supporting Putin's candidacy for the presidency. Taisiya Nikitenko, " Russia 's Eurasian Party Seeks to Become Major Party by 2003," ITAR-TASS News Agency wire report, July 30, 2001. was established June 19, 2000.
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Comments © Mark Sedgwick, 1998, 2000-2006