The Legionary Movement between “Political Religion” and “Collective Effervescence” Cover Image
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The Legionary Movement between “Political Religion” and “Collective Effervescence”
The Legionary Movement between “Political Religion” and “Collective Effervescence”

Author(s): Radu H. Dinu
Subject(s): History
Published by: Institutul National pentru Studiul Totalitarismului
Keywords: Fascism; Iron Guard; politics and religion

Summary/Abstract: When talking about Romania’s native fascist movement, scholars typically refer to it as “one of the rare modern European political movements with a religious structure” willingly inserting “strong elements of Orthodox Christianity in their political doctrine”. However, these preliminary statements remain somehow general when it comes to ascertain the explicit relationship of politics and religion in Romanian fascism. One more specific approach to this issue could at first sight be to clarify the complex personal links between the Romanian clergy and the Legionary Movement. The other certainly more rewarding way to illuminate this reciprocal affinity between politics and religion is rather to ascertain, to what extent Romanian fascism as a whole developed (pseudo-) religious claims and if these claims entered into a conflict with the Orthodox Church. The author starts by discussing the capacity and limits of current political religion theories. In its second part, the article tries to demonstrate how the sacralization of politics can be alternatively reconstructed from a perspective of collective experience employing Émile Durkheim’s concept of “collective effervescence”.

  • Issue Year: 2008
  • Issue No: 3-4
  • Page Range: 16-25
  • Page Count: 10
  • Language: English