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Thread: The Origins of "Racism": the Curious Beginnings of a Useless Word

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    The Origins of "Racism": the Curious Beginnings of a Useless Word

    The Oxford English Dictionary is a multivolume reference work that is one of Western scholarship's most remarkable achievements -- the standard dictionary of the English language on what are known as "historical principles". Unlike most dictionaries, the OED also provides information on the first historical appearance and usage of words. The range of the erudition in the OED is often astounding, but for AR readers, one of its most interesting entries is for the word "racism".

    According to the second edition (1989) of the OED, the earliest known usage of the word "racism" in English occurred in a 1936 book by the American "fascist", Lawrence Dennis, The Coming American Fascism. The second usage of the term in English that the OED records is in the title of a book originally written in German in 1933 and 1934 but translated into English and first published in 1938 -- Racism by Magnus Hirschfeld, translated by Eden and Cedar Paul. Since Hirschfeld died in 1935, before the publication of Dennis' book the following year, and had already used the word extensively in the text and title of his own book, it seems only fair to recognize him rather than Dennis as the originator of the word "racism". In the case of the word "racist" as an adjective, the OED ascribes the first known usage to Hirschfeld himself. Who was Magnus Hirschfeld and what did he have to tell us about "racism"?

    Magnus Hirschfeld (1868-1935) was a German-Jewish medical scientist whose major work was in the field of what came to be known as "sexology" -- the scientific study of sex. Like Havelock Ellis in England and Alfred Kinsey in the United States, Hirschfeld was not only among the first to collect systematic information about sexuality but also was an apostle of sexual "liberation". His major work was a study of homosexuality, but he also published many other books, monographs, and articles dealing with sex. He wrote a five-volume treatise on "sexology" as well as some 150 other works and helped write and produce five films on the subject.

    It is fair to say that his works were intended to send a message–that traditional Christian and bourgeois sexual morality was repressive, irrational, and hypocritical, and that emancipation would be a major step forward. His admiring translators, Eden and Cedar Paul, in their introduction to Racism, write of his "unwearying championship of the cause of persons who, because their sexual hormonic functioning is of an unusual type, are persecuted by their more fortunate fellow-mortals." Long before the "sexual revolution" of the 1960s, Magnus Hirschfeld was crusading for the "normalization" of homosexuality and other abnormal sexual behavior.

    Hirschfeld was the founder of an Institute for Sexual Science in Berlin and helped organize "sexology" on an international scale. In 1922, he was physically attacked and almost killed by anti- Semites in Munich. In May, 1933, the Nazis closed down his "Institute of Sexual Science" and Hirschfeld fled to France, where he lived until his death in 1935.

    Racism is largely devoted to a highly polemical "refutation" of some of the main racial ideologies and theories of the 19th and 20th centuries. The writers whom Hirschfeld criticized, aside from his favorite target of the National Socialists themselves, were figures like Arthur de Gobineau, Vacher de La-Pouge, Houston Stewart Chamberlain, and others generally denounced today as "pseudo-scientists". In fact, that is an inappropriate term. Some of them were not trying to write as scientists at all but rather as political theorists, while others are better described as pre-scientific writers on race who worked with inadequate information, concepts, methodology, and terminology. While Hirschfeld may have been correct in rejecting their more egregious errors, his sneering at them for these mistakes is rather like ridiculing Copernicus and Kepler because they continued to accept some erroneous ideas from medieval astronomy.

    Even when Hirschfeld is right in his critique of the early race theorists, it is often because he has chosen easy targets. His "refutation" of "racism" is largely centered on irrelevant common-places that even extreme exponents of racial differences might readily acknowledge–that all human beings are part of the same species and can interbreed, that blood transfusions can take place between races, that "there is no such thing as a pure race," that the races are identical in the vast majority of physical characteristics, that cephalic index is not a meaningful measurement of intelligence or character, etc. Yet his "scientific" evidence is often merely anecdotal or simply his own opinion asserted as unquestioned truth.

    In another section, he recounts the names of those he considers the 70 most outstanding figures in world history and announces that "all such lists, when made without bias, will show that persons of genius and persons of outstanding talent are not set apart from the ruck by any colour of their eyes, by a peculiar shape of the skull or the nose, by any 'ethnological' characteristics whatever. What is decisive in human beings is not race but individuality." It does not seem to occur to Hirschfeld that all but about 8 or 9 of the 70 world-historical figures on his list are white Europeans. There are no Negroes and only two Asians (Confucius and Sun Yat Sen).

    It is interesting that for all his contempt for "racism", Hirschfeld never once mentions IQ studies or the considerable psychometric evidence about race and intelligence that was already available even in the 1930s. Most of Hirschfeld's polemic is aimed at the proponents of intra-European racial differences (Nordics, Alpines, Mediterraneans, Dinarics, etc.) and not at differences between whites and other major races (though he steadfastly denies such differences as well). Curiously, he never cites the work of Franz Boas and his disciples against "racism", though that work was available in Europe at the time, nor does he invoke the ideas of the Frankfurt School, though Hirschfeld's own claim that "racism" is rooted in fear, loss of self-esteem, and other social and psychological pathologies resembles the ideas the Frankfurt School was formulating.

    Nor, despite Hirschfeld's own Jewish background and the Nazi threat to Jews, does he seem preoccupied with anti-Semitism; in one or two passages he criticizes Jews themselves for their own ethnocentrism and faults Zionism for having created a new "race hatred" between Jews and Arabs. Moreover, Hirschfeld is a stout defender of eugenics, though not on racial lines, and he even has a brief chapter exploring a distinction he calls "Gobinism or Galtonism" - that is, attacking the ideas of French "racist" Arthur de Gobineau and defending those of Francis Galton, who coined the word "eugenics" and pioneered its development. Today most critics of "racism" would lump Galton and Gobineau together rather than distinguish between them.

    As a serious critique of the view that socially significant natural differences between the races exist, Hirschfeld's book is a failure, and even as a polemic against some of the more politicized and unverified claims about race made a century or more ago, it is weak. The importance of the book is not so much its content, however, as what it tells us about the word "racism" and how the enemies of white racial consciousness have developed and deployed it for their own purposes.

    Hirschfeld describes his own political ideals as "Pan-Humanism," a version of political, cultural, and racial universalism. The Pauls themselves write, "we think that the readers of Racism will detect a very definite orientation to the Left. . . . [Hirschfeld] was one who fully realized that sexual reform is impossible without a preliminary economic and political revolution."

    In Racism, Hirschfeld offers what is essentially a definition of "Pan-Humanism": "The individual, however close the ties of neighborhood, companionship, family, a common lot, language, education, and the environment of nation and country, can find only one dependable unity within which to seek a permanent spiritual kinship–that of humanity-at-large, that of the whole human race." With one exception, he is unsparing in his denunciations of the ethnocentric loyalties of nations, races, and cultures: "Always and everywhere, except in Soviet Russia, xenophobia, xenophobia, xenophobia." Later, he informs us, "It may be too early to speak, but perhaps the problem of nationalities and races has already been solved on one-sixth of the land-surface of the globe [i.e., Stalin's Russia]."

    "Racism", therefore, is a term originating on the left, and has been so defined and loaded with meanings the left wants it to have that it cannot now be used by the supporters of white racial consciousness for any constructive purpose. Anyone who uses the term to describe himself or his own views has already allowed himself to be maneuvered onto his opponents' ground and has already lost the debate. He may try to define the word differently, but he will need to spend most of his time explaining that he does not mean by it what everyone else means. As a term useful for communicating ideas that the serious supporters of white racial consciousness wish to communicate, the term is useless, and it was intended by those who developed it that it be useless for that purpose.

    But understanding the origins of the word "racism" in Hirschfeld's polemic also makes clear the uselessness of the word for any other purpose. No one seems ever to have used the word to describe his own ideas or ideas with which he agrees; its only application has been by the enemies of the ideas it purports to describe, and hence it has no objective meaning apart from its polemical usage. If no one calls his own ideas "racism" and its only application is to a body of ideas considered to be untrue and evil, then it has no use other than as a kind of fancy curse word, the purpose of which is simply to demonize anyone who expresses the ideas it is supposed to describe.

    It is clear that Magnus Hirschfeld himself harbored deep ideological, professional, and personal animosities against those to whom he applied the word, and those animosities may have extended to the entire society that throughout his career he associated with sexual repression and which he wanted replaced by a kind of global communism under the label of "Pan-Humanism". Whatever the flaws or virtues of his polemic against "racism", his own opposition to racial consciousness was neither entirely rational nor disinterested. It is time that the enemies of racial, national, and cultural consciousness like Hirschfeld and the Frankfurt School cease to be able to claim a monopoly on rationality and sanity and that the obsessions and motivations that seem to shape their own ideologies and political behavior be subjected to the same scrutiny they apply to the societies and peoples whom their thinking could destroy.
    http://www.sovereignty.org.uk/sitein...d/oracism.html

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    "Racist" -- A Word Invented by USSR's Leon Trotsky

    by Dustin Stanley



    The word "racist" has for a long time been the single most effective fear-word in the leftist and neoconservative arsenal. For decades, they have successfully used it in the political arena to slander traditionalists, shut down debate, and leave opponents running for cover. In the social arena, they have caused even more damage by using it to brainwash impressionable children and young college students, and to teach people to hate their nation, their cultural traditions, and worst of all, themselves.

    What surprisingly remains almost totally undiscussed, even on the hard core traditionalist Right, is the word's origin. Did it come from a liberal sociologist? A 60's Marxist college professor? Perhaps a politician in the Democratic Party? No. It turns out that the word was invented by none other than one of the principal architects of the 74-year Soviet nightmare, the founder and first leader of the infamous Red Army, Leon Trotsky.

    Take a look at this document if you would, dear reader.

    Славянофильство, мессианизм отсталости, строило свою философию на том, что русский народ и его церковь насквозь демократичны, а официальная Россия -- это немецкая бюрократия, насажденная Петром. Маркс заметил по этому поводу: "Ведь точно так же и тевтонские ослы сваливают деспотизм Фридриха II и т. д. на французов, как будто отсталые рабы не нуждаются всегда в цивилизованных рабах, чтобы пройти нужную выучку". Это краткое замечание исчерпывает до дна не только старую философию славянофилов, но и новейшие откровения "расистов".

    This is Leon Trotsky's 1930 work, "The History of the Russian Revolution", from which shown above is a passage. The last word in that passage is "расистов", whose Latin transliteration is "racistov", i.e., "racists". This work here is the first time in history one will ever find that word.

    My more doubtful readers may check the internet, the microfiche and microfilm at the local library, as well as the numerous books arrayed along the shelves there, but they shall never find an earlier usage of the word "racist" than Trotsky's coinage of the word here.

    So the next logical question is what was Leon Trotsky's purpose in inventing this word? To find out, let us look at a full English translation of the paragraph we looked at before.

    "Slavophilism, the messianism of backwardness, has based its philosophy upon the assumption that the Russian people and their church are democratic through and through, whereas official Russia is a German bureaucracy imposed upon them by Peter the Great. Mark remarked upon this theme: "In the same way the Teutonic jackasses blamed the despotism of Frederick the Second upon the French, as though backward slaves were not always in need of civilised slaves to train them." This brief comment completely finishes off not only the old philosophy of the Slavophiles, but also the latest revelations of the 'racists.'"

    The Slavophiles which Trotsky alluded to were historically a group of traditionalist Slavs who valued greatly their native culture and way of life, and wanted to protect it. Trotsky on the other hand saw them and others like them as an impedement to his internationalist communist plans for the world. This man didn't care one iota about the Slavic Russians whom he supposedly served. To him, Slavophiles, i.e. Slavs that committed the "crime" of loving their own people and trying to protect their traditional ways were simply "backward", and others like them were simply "racists".

    The reality of the word's origin is indeed quite a far cry from the left-liberal version of the story: that the word was coined in bona fides to identify people who were just plain bigoted against certain racial groups, and as a rallying cry for good liberals to protect the racial minorities from the bigots. On the contrary, the actual concept behind the word (even though he hadn't invented it quite yet) -- that ethnocentric "backwardness" must take a back seat to "enlightened" internationalism -- was often used by Army-Navy Commissar Trotsky as a rallying cry for good Red Army communiststo embark upon murderous rampages against peoples who resisted having their traditional way of life paved over and replaced with an alien system.[1]

    Fast-forwarding to today in 2010, the only changes to the word and its underlying concept from 1930 (besides Marxists having perfected the art of achieving the same thing with less blood but no less misery) are that the word's targets have expanded from just Slavs who won't submit to the Marxist internationalist plan to uproot and destroy their culture and traditional way of life, to all white people, Slavic or otherwise, who won't submit to that same vile Marxist plan. Also, those who arm themselves with the word have expanded from a handful of communists to the entire liberal and neoconservative establishment in nations all across the world.

    Leon Trotsky, after helping Lenin to create the Soviet murder machine in which he and Trotsky killed 1 to 4 million[2] people, was removed from power and expelled from the Soviet Union in the year 1929 after losing a power struggle to become Lenin's successor to Josef Stalin. However, before fading into the pages of history, Leon Trotsky would do one last thing in 1930 that would arguably cause more damage to the West than Stalin and his successors' entire Soviet nuclear arsenal could ever have done. He would invent a word that would empower literally the most rotten, traitorous weasels within the West to redefine those loyal to their people, their cultural traditions and way of life as the worst evil, and to send the government, the education system, and the mass media on an absolute royal crusade until they themselves and virtually everyone else around them actually believe it. And this unholy creation would be repeated over and over again, bolstered by revisionist history fabricated by more of the same rotten weasels falsely portraying the white man as the sole perpetrator of slavery and genocide in the world, and this would go on and on until the West would submit via demoralization to the entire Trotskyist internationalist agenda without a single shot being fired. We can see the final stages of this playing out right now, with racial double standards having been created here in America (at the expense of American whites, of course), with the creation of "racism" and "hate speech" offenses in Europe (only targeting the indigineous population, of course), with the Canadian and Australian governments having implemented "multiculturalism" as official state policy (at the expense of the pre-existing Canadian and Australian cultures), and most of all, with the huge wave of third-world immigration into the West, supported by all Western governments (otherwise it wouldn't be happening), which is radically changing the makeup and culture of those countries, and is threatening their original populations with becoming a minority in their own countries within just a few decades.

    Due especially to Trotsky's hand in the murder of millions of people under the Lenin regime, as well as the ongoing global recession causing many fence sitters to take a side in these affairs, Rightists have a real opportunity to shut the lid on this word once and for all, simply by telling the truth about who invented the word and what its purpose was (and is). It is an opportunity that we cannot afford to miss. One can hardly imagine a true Euro-nationalist movement where most of the people in it believe they are "racists" for daring to embark on such a project, as today's reigning system would have us believe.


    [1]There is an appalling lack of good material available on the internet about the additional tragedy of the repression of regional sovereignty and self-determination movements after the Czar's collapse in Russia by Trotsky's Red Army. One of the best things you'll find on the web about it is the Nina Turmarkin interview which is the last thing I linked on the paragraph demarcated by this footnote, and is located here:
    (http://www.pbs.org/heavenonearth/int..._tumarkin.html). Ms. Turmarkin discusses the optimism that existed after the February Revolution which overthrew the Czar, about villages that declared their independence from the regime and sewed their own flags, etc. She doesn't go on to say what happened to those villages and such, but if you know the history, you know of course that they were forced back into the fold, an even worse fold than the Czar's for that matter, at the point of a Red Army bayonet held by a soldier commanded by Trotsky, and those who would not go back into that worse fold were of course killed. Anyhow, I truly would suggest that the interested reader on this subject get hold of book sources for further reading, because unfortunately what is out there on the web is the bottom of the barrel.

    [2]The higher estimate of state murder (4 million) under the Lenin/Trotsky regime is that of political scientist R.J. Rummel in his book Lethal Politics: Soviet Genocide and Mass Murder Since 1917, found here: (http://www.hawaii.edu/powerkills/NOTE4.HTM). I myself was taught a lower estimate of 1-2 million during my school years. The main factors in the deaths were executions of dissidents, brutal suppressions of the self-determination movements that arose after the fall of the Czar and in reaction to the early Soviet police state, and the Russian famine of 1921. The new Soviet government was certainly responsible for the first two. They were at least somewhat responsible for the third, but exactly how responsible is a matter of debate that is beyond the scope of this article. Either way, 1-2 million, 4 million, or somewhere in between, it is absolutely atrocious what happened under that regime.
    http://newrightamerica.blogspot.com/...ssrs-leon.html

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