The Transnational Nouvelle Droite

Sara Dix

Tamir Bar-On’s “Transnationalism and the French Nouvelle Droite” and Riccard Marchi’s “The Nouvelle Droite in Portugal” were really interesting. They both focus on the spread of the Nouvelle Droit (ND) on an international level, but also how it has placed itself along the political spectrum.

What’s most unique about the ND is that it is neither a political party nor an extra-parliamentary outfit, but a kind of school of thought and metapolitical movement that are culturally focused. I found it somewhat confusing, especially since it does not associate itself with the far-right but the world-view is a transnational synthesis of revolutionary right-wing and left-wing ideas. This is shown in Marchi’s article when the ND appears in Portugal and the two young intellectuals, Jaime Nogueira Pinto and Antonio Marques Bessa, who were most influenced managed to increase its popularity within Portugal.

However, the ND in Portugal did not seek to modernize radical-right thinking during the post-Franco period but it actually stressed the need to locate its cultural background within the fields of innovative scientific knowledge. The Portuguese intellectuals were more interested in the methods of the French ND rather than its content. This is not unheard of either. When ideas travel beyond a nation, other people will usually take what they like and transform it into their own. But it’s interesting to see that both right and left-wing groups have criticized the ND for its unique stance as a school of thought.

One Reply to “The Transnational Nouvelle Droite”

  1. I agree that the ‘extraparliamentary’ aim definitely was an interesting element – a political movement that was explicitly avoiding electoral politics, and instead focusing on changing the rhetorical framework within which those electoral politics functioned (Overton window, and such). I saw quite a few parallels to the attempts to build the ‘New (Fascist) Man’ discussed in previous weeks, particularly in the Romanian case described by Sandelescu – the aim was to steer the population into certain thought patterns, to adopt a certain worldview, and only then would the population be ready to accept the Nouvelle Droite’s world view.

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