Policing & Polishing Morality
It was the French philosopher, social theorist and literary critic Paul-Michel Foucault, whose heard mentioning: “The strategic adversary is Fascism…the fascism in us all, in our heads and in our everyday behaviour, the fascism that causes us to love power, to desire the very thing that dominates and exploits us.”
It does not mean that the ‘self‘ residing in our encephalon triggers riots or plans terror attacks or even makes bombs everyday in order to serve subversive needs… In fact, we cannot see this fascist self easily. The presence of this self is felt in our behaviour, our activities and especially our words! That is why we, occasionally, tend to using foul languages or even get involved in irrational activities. This fascist self is very much alive inside all the self-proclaimed modern, progressive and politically conscious people… and quite often, the existence of this self becomes very prominent in our daily behaviour! According to Foucault, this is not a specific political identity… so, it can be called micro-fascism. (Preface to Anti-Oedipus; Michel Foucault; 1972)
Michel Foucault (1926-1984)
Although micro-fascism resides in our brains and minds, it primarily influences a particular ‘structure of power’ that is universal in nature. This structure of power, present inside us, is ‘invisible’. Foucault was of the opinion that the structure always encourages us to enjoy power. Like other sources of power, the love for power attracts us to its one and only Centre of Gravity. More peoples’ power is leading to a somewhat lurid display of power. Basically, it is an endless game or loop…
There is another form of fascism, called ‘Historical Fascism’, which ends up being a Hitler or Mussolini… Foucault claimed that it is comparatively easy to identify this structure of power as it has a specific ideology. Historical Fascism triggered a number of wars and riots in different parts of the globe in the 20th Century. Most importantly, this type of fascism had not only a state-centric character, but also the legitimacy! Many Germans and Italians were seen supporting this authoritarian politics actively!
The ultimate trouble begins when micro-fascism meets historical fascism. The moment they recognise each other as their accomplice, the day-to-day violent activities, as well as the events, tend to get legitimacy! It is at that time the common people seemingly start to believe that war is not so bad…they back the politicians in favour of punishing the anti-national enemies… even the social media would try to find and establish the logic behind this nationalist sentiment!
The fascist self, living inside us all, believes that this sentiment is logical and ultimate. He also believes that this ugly reality is actually a sacred anger that is important for the nation’s welfare! Seemingly, this was why many Indians had declared war against neighbouring Pakistan on the social media, immediately after 40 Indian soldiers were killed in a terror attack in Pulwama on February 14. Like India, many countries in the world have become a meeting place of micro-fascism and historical fascism in recent times… Micro-fascism teaches that any sort of violence is legitimate, if backed by the state power. These violent activities certainly satisfy the ego of the fascist self living inside us…
As far as India and Pakistan are concerned, the border crisis is not a new issue… Unfortunately, these two South Asian neighbours are yet to resolve the crisis through peaceful negotiations! Now, the most important point is whether we can resolve the crisis through a war…The issue is a critical one… as we might have to face the same cycle!
To counter this micro-fascism, it is much needed to find a new morality, which should be personal, as well as political. It should be personal, because one has to practice this morality all through his daily activities…and it should be political, too, as the political consciousness should be the base of this new morality! It is evident in history that the battle against micro-fascism helped the human beings emerge victorious in the war against historical fascism… and We would Win the War yet Again!
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