Tuesday, March 20, 2012

a COmmensalist history of WWII

The consensus history of WWII was written during and immediately after the war itself, by men (mostly) ; men aged between their forties to sixties in 1945.

This consensus view of WWII has been frequently challenged, starting in the 1960s but still guides our view of the war, particularly among the casual public.

Those men were fully Modernist men - far too young to have come of age before The Second Industrial Revolution (aka "HARD MODERNITY" or  "FULL BORE MODERNITY").

Equally they were far too young to have come of age in the era that replaced Modernity : Commensality.

They saw this Modernist War through eyes so attuned perfectly to Modernity as to not even be aware it was a Modernist War between rival Modernist empires.

They focussed on the very real differences that divided Modernist capitalist country from Modernist communist or fascist or nazi country.

But they failed to see that all six major combatants,plus some dished earlier in the war (France,the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy),were imperialistic empires.

 Imperialism 's division between  "equality among mature citizens" and "non-equality for non-mature/non-citizens" is the very essence of Modernity --- if you write in "Nature & Humans-close-to-Nature" for "non-mature/non-citizen" , as any good Modernist would.

What they failed to see is what the elites in all the combatants and neutral countries had in common: an unthinking acceptance of Modernity's values.

Modernity had its critics back in the early 1940s but what is striking is how clay-bound the feet of the most jaded critic still were - how by the values of 2012, they still had too much of the system that they sought to attack buried deep in their intellectual bones.

I don't know enough about Dr Martin Henry Dawson and his potentially clay-bound feet to say much about him one way or the other.

But then his deeds form his autobiography, showing him to be at least a pre-Commensalist and so it would seem that he and his little team must have viewed this unfolding Modernist war with very jaundiced eyes.

Their story,the birth of an early Commensalist success story during and despite WWII , thus forms the backbone to my much larger story of Modernity's many signal failures during that war, its war.

The backbone and the contrast ---- the cheery, hopeful commensal frame to a modernist painting of a moral Hell on Earth....

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