Where Are Wokeism and Cancel Culture Taking Us?

Where Are Wokeism and Cancel Culture Taking Us?
Since the days of the French Revolution, the left has sought the destruction of historical memory as part of its war unleashed against Christian civilization.

Since the days of the French Revolution, the left has sought the destruction of historical memory as part of its war unleashed against Christian civilization. Suffice it to recall the devastation of churches and monuments in France between 1789 and 1795. The desecration of the Basilica of Saint-Denis was much more expressive, where the tombs of French kings were opened and their mortal remains exhumed and scattered. All these acts had an evident symbolic meaning: every trace of the past had to be physically erased in compliance with the decree of the Convention of August 1, 1793. From that decree until the “cancel culture” and the “woke” ideology of our days, this damnatio memoriae mentality dominates the history of the European left.

“Cancel culture” erases memory to favor an ideological vision according to which the West has no universal values to propose to the world but only past crimes for which to atone. The term woke is an English adjective that means “to stay awake” to any racial or social injustice inherited from the past that must then be purged.

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The left’s utopia of the “new man” presupposes making a clean slate of the past. Thus, the human species becomes formless “raw material” that can then be remodeled or recast like soft wax. The next step for humanity is “transhumanism,” a regeneration of the species through science and technology.

However, this destructive process has such an uncontrollable dynamism that it threatens to overwhelm the political left itself. Conchita De Gregorio, an Italian journalist from that leftward world, published an article in La Stampa on July 7, recounting three significant episodes in France which aroused her alarm.

The first episode says that “In a famous dance school popular with families in the Marais, a stronghold of the progressive Parisian elites, the parents of the little dancers asked the head teacher not to allow instructors to indicate the correct  movements of children and adolescents by touching them with their hands, but with a stick.” The reason is that any contact between bodies, including the hand that directs the torso or accompanies a step tried for the first time, could potentially be sexual harassment.

The second episode happened at a theater class at the Higher Institute of Fine Arts in Paris. When taking a group photo, the teacher asks a girl to tie her hair in a ponytail “since the magnificent, sumptuous afro expanding horizontally completely covered the faces of her classmates to her right and left.” The whole class rioted at the request, denouncing it as a racist. The principal forced the teacher to resign.

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The third episode involves a famous feminist who “supports the freedom of Islamic women not to wear the veil. Pay attention: Not just not wear. but to consider wearing and not wearing as equally free.” Her leftist colleagues accused her of Islamophobia, being right-wing, and having sold out. Because of the controversy, the feminist needed to have a bodyguard. Between feminism and Islamophilia, the left chooses Islamism because it is characterized by a greater hatred towards the West.

A broader and more in-depth picture of what is happening in France is offered by a book just published by Avenir de la Culture, under the direction of Atilio Faoro, titled The Woke Revolution Arrives in France (La Révolution Woke débarque en France, Paris 2023, pp. 86).

The authors explain Woekism as an heir to the Soviet Terror and Great Purges. It is a global ideology that wants to transform society into a vast re-education camp. The fanatics of this ideology affirm that “French gastronomy is racist,” “classical literature is sexist,” “a man can be pregnant,” and the 4,600 municipalities named after saints must be renamed. They say Notre Dame Cathedral is a symbol of oppression and should be relabeled as “Notre Dame of the survivors of pedo-criminality.” The French language should be deconstructed, replacing, for example, the term “homage,” a feudal masculine term, with “femmage.” Instead of “patrimonio,” the word “marriage” should be used to avoid conceding even the slightest semantic advantage to machismo.

Such affirmations are not the product of madness but the consistent consequences of a worldview that rejects the historical memory of the West and, in particular, its Christian roots.

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Culture involves the exercise of man’s spiritual and intellectual faculties. To develop a culture, society needs a memory that preserves and passes on what has already been produced in history. Memory is the awareness of a society’s roots and the fruits these roots have produced. “The fidelity of memory,” observed the German philosopher Josef Pieper, “truly means that it ‘keeps’ real things and events as they really are and have been. The falsification of memory, contrary to reality, brought about by the ‘yes’ or ‘no’ of the will, is the true and proper ruin of memory; since it contradicts its intimate nature, which is that of ‘containing’ the truth of real things” (La prudenza, Morcelliana, Brescia 1999, p. 38).

To impose a lie, destroy the truth contained in memory. For this reason, the erasure of memory, which contains the truth of history, is a crime against humanity. The woke revolution is an expression of this crime.

Wokeism develops in the West to destroy the West. However, it has nothing to do with the history and identity of our civilization since it is its radical antithesis. The detractors of the West who allow themselves to be seduced by formulas and schemes such as Islamic Eurabia, Muscovite’s Third Rome or Chinese neo-communism embrace a suicidal itinerary. The woke ideology is the last stage of a disease that comes from afar, and that cannot be cured by killing the patient. Wokeism and cancel culture are not the act of death of the West, but the tumors found in an organism that was once healthy and which can still recover if there will be, as we hope, the radical intervention of the Divine Surgeon.

As seen in Corrispondenza Romana

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