Chair: Dr. Mischa Gabowitsch, Potsdam
There has been a curious resistance among scholars, and to a lesser extent among political practitioners, to the fact that fascism is not a European phenomenon alone, or even necessarily in origin. The ideas that went into European fascisms were present in an international public domain from the late 19th century, and outside Europe they sometimes persisted without having been discredited after the dominion of fascism ended in Europe in 1945. Although fascism in its formative years emerged as a set of ideas in a public domain that was structured by a widespread cooperation and exchange of ideas across the world, this has seldom been accepted, in part because claims to the authentic genius of each people or nation are integral to fascist movements, and the cooperation is veiled or disavowed. This lecture uses primarily Indian examples to show the long-term connections and persistence of fascist movements.
Dr. Benjamin Zachariah is Senior Research Fellow at the DFG Leibniz Research Group “The Contemporary History of Historiography” at Trier University. He read history at Presidency College, Calcutta, and at Trinity College, Cambridge, and taught for several years at Sheffield University in the UK. His current research interests include historiography and historical theory, the movements of ideas in the twentieth century, international revolutionary networks, and global fascism. He is the author of Nehru (2004), Developing India: an Intellectual and Social History, c. 1930–1950 (2005; 2nd edn 2012), Playing the Nation Game: the Ambiguities of Nationalism in India (2011; 2nd edn 2016), and After the Last Post: the Lives of Indian Historiography in India (2019). He is co-editor of The Internationalist Moment: South Asia, Worlds and World Views 1917–1939 (2015).