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Accepted Paper:

Demonizing 'the Right' as a serious problem within anthropology. Polish perspectives  

Author:

Mariusz Filip (Adam Mickiewicz University)

Paper short abstract:

Accounts of 'the Right' are full of misconceptions resulting in more or less demonization of it. Anthropology should bring back a human face to 'the Rightist' since this is what anthropologists do with the Other. I will discuss four issues: rightism, extremity, hatred and anthropological mirroring.

Paper long abstract:

Accounts of 'the Right' are full of misconceptions resulting in more or less demonization of it. As an anthropologist I feel obliged to bring back a human face to 'the Rightist' who are normal people not the demons of hatred. This move is also necessary outside the academia for, like it or not, 'the Rightists' live in our world.

An ethnographic context for my discussion is Poland. Extreme right wing Slavic Pagans forming the Order of Zadruga 'Northern Wolf' is my main point of reference, howeverI will also refer to Law and Justice, a leading political party in the country since 2015. By such an extension of my material, I hope to strengthen the power of my theoretical argument and to improve our understanding of 'the Right' in Poland.

In order to get 'the Right' right I will: (1) consider three potential disjunctions between political and economical level, non-identifying and being identified and finally identifying and othering, (2) draw a line between extreme and non-extreme Right, (3) argue that defining the Right in terms of hatred is one-sided and overmoralized and finally (4) demonstrate that anthropologists mirror (replicate) some attributes ascribed to 'the Right'.

By all of that I hope to prove that fellow anthropologists have a serious problem with putting an imperative of (in short) tolerance into practice when it comes to 'the Right'.

Panel P131
Getting 'the Right' right: Comparative ethnographies of neo-nationalist movements in Europe