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Unregistered User
(1/8/02 9:56 pm)
Success of reactionary revolutions?
Would someone please do me a favor and point out an example of a successful traditional or quasi-traditional reaction that was successful? Modern examples seem to be failures.

Unregistered User
(1/8/02 10:07 pm)
I didn't realize the contradiction of terms in the title. My apologies. I want to clarify my question:

Where x is a civilization accompanied with a respective culture y. We may call this early and healthy culture y1.

Civilization x remains but y, the culture, has declined, withered away, become decadent and senile. At this point we have y99.

Has there been a case where there has been a successful return to y1 while keeping the civilization x? A true restoration?

Examples of civilization:
Imperial Rome, Ancient Egypt

Examples of culture:
Roman pagan culture

A broader question arises - are cultures recoverable?

(1/9/02 8:42 am)
Re: Addendum
Good question, and one that I don't have enough historical learning to deal with properly. One problem I think is that the lessons of history depend on how the story is told, and the story of restoration is not one that historians have wanted to tell for a while. That means it requires work to look at the past that way.

Even in modern progressive Europe though there have been restorations. With Trent Catholicism bounced back from the disorder into which it had fallen during the late Middle Ages and Renaissance, and in England the Restoration and Glorious Revolution were successful reactions to revolutionary tendencies in various directions. For that matter, both the Renaissance and Protestantism were understood as restorations - of classical antiquity and apostolic times respectively.

Going farther back, Judaism has been rescued from catastrophe or decadence several times - by Moses, after the Babylonian exile, by the prophets, in movements of resistance to Hellenization, after the destruction of the Temple by the Romans. The same could be said to a lesser extent about Christianity. The past 2000 years hasn't been one straight line.

There have also been cyclical civilizations - people view China that way, and in Egypt they had the Old, Middle and New Kingdoms. On their face such situations involve restoration of an old socio-religious order that had fallen apart.

One never restores the past exactly, but I do think these examples show that rejuvenation is possible, and that it makes at least as much sense to take the past as a guide to the future as it does to take some vision of one's own construction.

Jim Kalb and

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