Against the Modern World: Traditionalism and the Secret Intellectual History of the Twentieth Century

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9780195152975: Against the Modern World: Traditionalism and the Secret Intellectual History of the Twentieth Century

The first history of Traditionalism, an important yet surprisingly little-known twentieth-century anti-modern movement. Comprising a number of often secret but sometimes very influential religious groups in the West and in the Islamic world, it affected mainstream and radical politics in Europe and the development of the field of religious studies in the United States.
In the nineteenth century, at a time when progressive intellectuals had lost faith in Christianity's ability to deliver religious and spiritual truth, the West discovered non-Western religious writings. From these beginnings grew Traditionalism, emerging from the occultist milieu of late nineteenth-century France, and fed by the widespread loss of faith in progress that followed the First World War. Working first in Paris and then in Cairo, the French writer René Guénon rejected modernity as a dark age, and sought to reconstruct the Perennial Philosophy-- the central religious truths behind all the major world religions --largely on the basis of his reading of Hindu religious texts.
A number of disenchanted intellectuals responded to Guénon's call with attempts to put theory into practice. Some attempted without success to guide Fascism and Nazism along Traditionalist lines; others later participated in political terror in Italy. Traditionalism finally provided the ideological cement for the alliance of anti-democratic forces in post-Soviet Russia, and at the end of the twentieth century began to enter the debate in the Islamic world about the desirable relationship between Islam and modernity

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About the Author:


Mark Sedgwick is Assistant Professor of History at the American University in Cairo, and is the author of Sufism: The Essentials (2000).

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 234 x 160 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Against the Modern World is the first history of Traditionalism, an influential yet surprisingly little-known twentieth century anti-modernist movement. Involving a number of important, yet often secret, religious groups in the West and Islamic world, it affected mainstream and radical politics in Europe and religious studies in the United States. Emerging from the discovery in the West of non-Western religious writings, at a time in the nineteeth century when progressive intellectuals had lost faith in the ability of Christianity to deliver religious and spiritual truth, it was fuelled by the widespread religious scepticism that followed World War I. It found its voice in Rene Guenon, a French writer who rejected modernity as a dark age, and sought to reconstruct the Perennial Philosophy - the fundamental truth uniting all the world s religions. Mark Sedgwick reveals how this pervasive intellectual movement helped shape major events in twentieth century religious life, politics and scholarship - all the while remaining invisible to outsiders. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780195152975

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. 234 x 160 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Against the Modern World is the first history of Traditionalism, an influential yet surprisingly little-known twentieth century anti-modernist movement. Involving a number of important, yet often secret, religious groups in the West and Islamic world, it affected mainstream and radical politics in Europe and religious studies in the United States. Emerging from the discovery in the West of non-Western religious writings, at a time in the nineteeth century when progressive intellectuals had lost faith in the ability of Christianity to deliver religious and spiritual truth, it was fuelled by the widespread religious scepticism that followed World War I. It found its voice in Rene Guenon, a French writer who rejected modernity as a dark age, and sought to reconstruct the Perennial Philosophy - the fundamental truth uniting all the world s religions. Mark Sedgwick reveals how this pervasive intellectual movement helped shape major events in twentieth century religious life, politics and scholarship - all the while remaining invisible to outsiders. Bookseller Inventory # APC9780195152975

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Book Description Oxford University Press, USA. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. This item is printed on demand. Hardcover. 384 pages. The first history of Traditionalism, an important yet surprisingly little-known twentieth-century anti-modern movement. Comprising a number of often secret but sometimes very influential religious groups in the West and in the Islamic world, it affected mainstream and radical politics in Europe and the development of the field of religious studies in the United States. In the nineteenth century, at a time when progressive intellectuals had lost faith in Christianitys ability to deliver religious and spiritual truth, the West discovered non-Western religious writings. From these beginnings grew Traditionalism, emerging from the occultist milieu of late nineteenth-century France, and fed by the widespread loss of faith in progress that followed the First World War. Working first in Paris and then in Cairo, the French writer Ren Gunon rejected modernity as a dark age, and sought to reconstruct the Perennial Philosophy-- the central religious truths behind all the major world religions --largely on the basis of his reading of Hindu religious texts. A number of disenchanted intellectuals responded to Gunons call with attempts to put theory into practice. Some attempted without success to guide Fascism and Nazism along Traditionalist lines; others later participated in political terror in Italy. Traditionalism finally provided the ideological cement for the alliance of anti-democratic forces in post-Soviet Russia, and at the end of the twentieth century began to enter the debate in the Islamic world about the desirable relationship between Islam and modernity This item ships from La Vergne,TN. Hardcover. Bookseller Inventory # 9780195152975

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Book Description Book Condition: New. Oxford University Press, 2004. 384p. Hardback. Sedgwick's scholarship regarding Traditionalists themselves is exhaustive and admirable . Sedgwick contributes an introduction and overview of an otherwise little-known, but important, moment in modern intellectual history. Colin Beech, Journal of World History June 2006 (Publisher's information). Condition: New Print on Demand. Printed on Demand. Bookseller Inventory # 37557

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