Fascism is one of the most abused terms in the social sciences, and this abuse has arisen partially from misunderstandings that have developed from traditional assumptions about it. In this important new text Mark Neocleous overcomes these misunderstandings by presenting an original approach to the central questions concerning the nature of this major twentieth-century ideology.
Neocleous situates fascism between the social and political contradictions of modernity and capitalism. In many ways a reaction to the principal political project of the Enlightenment, fascism focuses on three central concepts -- war, nature, and nation -- in order to crush violently movements or ideologies of social emancipation such as Marxism and liberalism. The destruction of reason that fascism represents shatters Enlightenment universalism and transforms the desire for social liberation into an aggressive nationalism, with devastating effects on human life.
This clear and accessible overview treats the subject thematically and provides a conclusion that brings the discussion up-to-date. It is a key text for courses in political science or sociology, as well as essential reading for those with a wider interest in fascism.