Right-wing conservative radicalism as a pursuit of a cultural hegemony

Janusz Reykowski

Abstract


One of the most common and dangerous conflicts in contemporary democracies is related  to cultural differences in understanding of the basic principles  of social organization. Such conflict is developing also in Poland. Its most recent manifestation is the serious confrontation  between the new appointed Minister of Education and Science of the Polish government and the large part of the  Polish scientific community. In the first part of the paper, I analyze on the  basis of his publication the  minister’s socio-political worldview. I am  implying that it may explain his conflict arousing  policy. I am focusing on his concept of the natural law and his use of this concept, on his understandings of democracy and secular state, and on his interpretation of minority rights in democracy. I am concluding that he represents the ultraconservative (right-wing) version of the Roman Catholic worldview and is trying to impose its implications on  the Polish education as well as scientific institutions. In the second part of the paper, I am analyzing sociopsychological preconditions of  cultural conflicts and factors that may determine the radicalization of these conflicts

Keywords


conservatism; radicalism; democracy; human rights; right-wing authoritarianism; traditionalism; perceived threat; liberalism; religion; individual freedom; violence

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