Political Radicalism Themes


This compilation features books published by the Central European University Press since its foundation in 1993, that have some relevance to political radicalism. (Excluding communism and postcommunist authoritarianism.)

After the latest release, titles in the backlist are arranged by age: contemporary topics are on top, older themes below. For more substantial information about the content and availability, please click on the covers of the book, or on the links inserted into the citations.

“The ambition is to develop a new science of politics, a new paradigm that (in part at least) explains political behavior through an understanding of the brain.”—The Political Brain.
“We now have so-called fMRI scans, which allow us to indirectly see what goes on in the mind when we are presented with different facts or images or performing different tasks.”
“Certain people have a particular disposition and others do not. Whether genetically based or as a result of social factors, what we need to identify are the conditionals: the factors that prompt certain individuals to be susceptible to hate speech.”
“We are not far from a situation in which we can use brain scans to predict elections, or certainly, to reveal the ideological position of the voter in a brain scanner. Science fiction? Scary? Fascinating?”

“In some areas, especially in Eastern Europe, a new species has been found, namely countries with a declining quality of democracy have citizens showing satisfaction with this trend.”—Democracy Fatigue.
“Populism and demagoguery are not the same. The demagogue is a politician who flatters or scares the people to gain political support and legitimacy. The demagogue can be a democrat, a fascist, or a communist, but he or she is not always a populist.”
“Populism mobilizes anti-political feelings to make room for an alternative model of democracy.”
“When it comes to dealing with each other’s breaches, EU actors still feel more comfortable employing traditional conditionality tools than with the ‘nuclear’ option embodied in an Article 7 suspension.”
“Instead of talking about a ‘populist’ Zeitgeist in Europe, it would be advisable to refer to it as an ‘anti-liberal’ challenge to democracy.”

”Fascism historically has not proven to be uniform. For example, while the Third Reich imposed clear limits to what was allowable in art, Fascist Italy proved to be tolerant of a degree of diversity in art and cultural pluralism.”—Anti-Fascism in European History.
“While the fascist Independent State of Croatia instrumentalized Catholicism as a badge of loyalty to the state, Hitler’s Nazis worked with Protestant collaborators to create a pro-regime German Christian Movement, which redefined Jesus of Nazareth as an Aryan.”
“Anti-fascism may be inspired not only by a liberal commitment but also by anarchist, monarchist, communist, social democratic, or Christian conservative conceptions.”
“Slovenia is an interesting case because of the communist-led Partisan movement, which took up the fight against Nazi occupation of Slovenia; and because the division of conservative Catholics, between those prepared to collaborate with occupation authorities and those who rejected it, played an important role in wartime Slovenia.”

CEU Press titles on a variety of manifestations of political radicalism (contemporary topics on top, historical subjects below):

“The fascists, communists, and anarchists hated each other. Yet they shared some characteristics in common. All three reviled individualism, hated representative democracy and legalism, denounced materialism, and wanted to suppress all forms of what they considered decadence.” —Alternatives to Democracy in Twentieth-Century Europe.
„The Soviets, Italian Fascists, German Nazis, and Spanish anarchists all strove for an alternative modernity, giving priority to collective interests over individual interests. In each case there can be found to have been local debates, in which rival politicians spelled out their rival visions of the given political program.”
“I spell out how the Soviet, Fascist, Nazi, and anarchist leaders tried to operationalize their visions and how their programs affected political life, the economic sphere, the religious sphere, gender relations, and culture generally. After discussing the components and advantages of liberal democracy, I analyze the choke points where democratic systems may be undermined and subverted.”

“Imperialism disappeared temporarily after World War I and led many observers to conclude that it would not return. However, it did reappear in the form of Nazism as well as in the form of 21st-century Russian aggression in its wars with Ukraine.”—Globalization, Nationalism, and Imperialism.
“All of the post-communist societies experienced a wave of mass premature deaths, especially of middle- aged men, typically due to coronary diseases, cirrhosis of the liver (alcoholism), suicide, and homicide. Simultaneously, birth rates plummeted, as did marriage rates.”
“Mečiar had solid anti-communist credentials and was a competent politician, able to construct his party-state machine by a mix of corruption and patronage in ways that presaged the post-communist ‘mafia-states’ in Hungary and Poland.”
“A victory of virulently anti-EU forces in any major Western country of continental Europe can generate an implosion. The possibility of such an implosion casts a long dark shadow over the future of Eastern Europe.”

“Demagogues have a distinct capacity to mobilize a crowd by appealing to hatred, popular prejudices, anxieties, fear, and a lust for vengeance.”—A Century of Populist Demagogues.
“The belief that a single cause is responsible for innumerable problems is often much more appealing to people than the complicated truth that each problem has countless causes. An oversimplified answer is, of course, a kind of halftruth or a lie. Demagogues are inveterate liars—some doing so without knowing it, most deceiving quite deliberately.”
“The demagogue’s enemies can be a whole variety of “others”: a foreign power, a segment of society, the very rich, an ethnic or religious minority, the Jews, the immigrants, the Muslims, or representatives of a political ideology as the American McCarthyism embodied it in the 1950s. Demagogues routinely cast their adversaries and rivals as ‘enemies of the nation,’ serving alien interests with no moral or legal basis to be engaged politically.”

“Non-Jewish societies had witnessed the Holocaust on different stages. When it comes to individual biographies, these roles frequently contrast, overlap, or merge into ambivalent experiences that cannot be described using clear-cut categories like ‘perpetrator’ or ‘victim’.”—Growing in the Shadow of Antifascism.
“The constant threat of (neo-)fascism justified the ongoing antifascist struggle. Over the postwar period, antifascism was increasingly used as a propagandistic tool to establish a clear-cut ideological dichotomy between friends (‘antifascists’) and enemies (‘fascists’), particularly in rhetorical attacks on West Germany.”
“Through its propagandistic use, antifascism was ritualized, and therefore gradually lost its exclusive explanatory power in interpreting the confrontation of fascism (capitalism) and antifascism (communism) as it culminated during World War II. National and nationalist interpretations of the war, for instance, gained importance from the 1950s and 1960s on.”

“Offensive and defensive, civic and ethnic, come together in a variety of complex dialectical relations; civic purification by ideological terror may precede ethnic purification, or the two may exist in combination, as with the Khmer Rouge.”—Violence and Peace.
“Neither wars, nor injustice and inequality, are twentieth-century inventions; what is new is, on the one hand, the way war has lost its significance for the liberal societies and, on the other hand, the overwhelming reality of the Shoah, the Gulag, Auschwitz, the Moscow show trials, the systematic killing frenzy that erupts at the heart of modernity to seek the root-and-branch elimination of what is alien: in other words, genocide and totalitarianism.”
“As long ago I pointed out the convergence between universalist (and militant) nationalism, of which Nazism is an extreme example, and nationalist universalism, as represented by revolution adopted or enacted by a single country.”

“’Totalitarianism’ originated from Italian fascism in the 1930s and was widely used in U.S. rhetoric against the Soviet Union during the Cold War. The United States used the term ‘totalitarian’ differently from its original fascist meaning, applying it primarily to the state and political regime, not to the society.”—Totalitarian Societies and Democratic Transition.
„Five characteristics of totalitarian regimes: official ideology; one ruling party with iron discipline; the near absolute monopoly of control on all means of violence; the party-state monopoly on the means of mass information and the instruments of coercion; police terror and control. Friedrich and Brzezinski added the sixth characteristic: the state monopoly control over economic life.”
“Under totalitarianism in the absence of terror and coercion, both the state and society would collapse.”
“Recent publications have sought to overcome the ideological-intellectual taboo of comparing Nazi and Stalinist experiences and practices.”

“Sometimes artistic production taking place at the height of a tyrant’s power bears witness to loneliness or indeed weariness of power.”—Tyrants Writing Poetry.
“In the twentieth century, the literary engagement of despots either in the making or already in power was by no means limited to openly propagandistic texts. It in fact covers a broad spectrum: from the founding of state-religious book cults (Hitler, Mao, Niyazov), to literary-critical submissions (Lenin, Stalin, Mussolini, Kim Jong-il), to the writing of novels (al-Gaddafi, Saddam Hussein), and onward to the duet of rifle shots and lyric recitations (Karadžić).”

“'Knife, pistol, automatic shotgun, and time bomb” the poglavnik wrote in 1932, “are the bells that will announce the dawn and birth of the independent Croatian state.”—Nationalism and Terror.
“Pavelić asked the Duce to send his ‘invincible army’ to Croatia, in order to rebuild the thousand-year independent Croatian state.”
“Jasenovac was the symbol of the annihilation policy applied by the Independent State of Croatia during the four years of its existence.”

„The antimodernist projects were posing an internal critique of modernity, offering an at times extremely ruthless criticism of parliamentary democracy, rationalism, individualism, and the vision of linear progress, often also rejecting legal equality.”—Anti-modernism.
“The 1930s saw the emergence of authoritarian regimes all over East Central and Southeastern Europe. At the same time, a number of radical right-wing political movements rose to prominence, from the Romanian Iron Guard, through the Croatian Ustaša, the Hungarian Arrow Cross, the Bulgarian Kubrat and Legionary movements, the Serbian Zbor, to the Polish Camp of Great Poland and Falanga.”
“The turn towards the archaic past as a normative model in the radical right-wing project did not actually mean the rejection of modern technologies. In fact, for some of the intellectuals in the region, fascism offered a model of modernization.”