Fascism to Complete the National Project? Bulgarian Fascists’ Uncertain Views on the Palingenesis of the Nation

in East Central Europe
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Western comparative studies of fascism have largely neglected to consider the case of interwar Bulgaria, despite a growing number of provocative studies by Bulgarian scholars. Despite significant political and economic crises, indigenous fascism remained split into a number of small movements that failed to become prominent political forces in the country. The paper argues that Bulgarian fascist movements faced problems differentiating their goals and ideologies from other elements of the far right, highlighting the porous boundaries between the two movements. Specifically, it compares the goals and programs of the fascist National Social Movement, the Union of Bulgarian National Legions and the Warriors for the Advancement of the Bulgarian Spirit (or Ratniks) to conservative authoritarian movements in the country. While noting the temporal power of conservative authoritarian rivals who were in control of the government from 1934 to 1944, the paper hypothesizes that the relative lack of distinct ideological features contributed to the weakness of fascist groups, and suggests the utility of including Bulgaria in the field of comparative fascist studies.

Fascism to Complete the National Project? Bulgarian Fascists’ Uncertain Views on the Palingenesis of the Nation

in East Central Europe

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