Marxoid clergy.nSuch a combination may strike thenAmerican reader as rather odd; yet thesenseeming paradoxes characterize the effervescentnFrench climate, in whichnintellectual questioning and counterquestioningnthrive. There is a similarncontradiction behind ND’s popularity.nThe followers are mostly young peoplenfrom bourgeois Catholic-rightist families,nstudents, bureaucrats, professionals,njournalists, who feel let down notnonly by the repeated failures of the Maurrassiannright, but also by the failure ofnthe Church to block the cultural-politicalnconquest of leftism. They reach outnfor a new synthesis of anti-egalitarianism,nmodernity in art and literary forms,nthe rediscovery of pagan myths and thensearch for the underlying unity of diversencivilizational structures. Thenmovement has efficiently caught thesenaspirations and made of them a moreor-lessncoherent bundle, not quite a system,nlet alone a philosophy—an ideology,nperhaps. ND’s intellectual leadersnhave attached themselves to an impressivenarray of thinkers and writers whonnow willingly admit their connectionnwith ND, write for its increasingly numerousnpublications and attend its internationalncongresses. The ND claims asncollaborators and sympathizers men likenlonesco, Arthur Koestler, Jencks,nEysenck, Konrad Lorenz and MirceanEliade.nPerhaps strangely for a movement labeledn”rightist,” the initial thrust isnaimed at the Christian religion. This isnalmost a personal crusade for Benoist, althoughnonce I heard him brilliantly pinndown a fashionable Dominican who hadnjust uttered a chain of modernist nonsense.nBenoist has offered an outlet tonpeople, young and old, with an accumulatednbitterness against the Church. ProfessornLouis Rougier, the grand old mannof ND, argues, like the Roman Celsus innthe 2nd century and later Voltaire, thatnChristian metaphysics undermined thenpagan speculative enterprise and its titlento glory, humanistic rationalism. FollowingnRougier, and Nietzsche, thenyounger ND thinkers add that Christianitynis only one among the many myths, innfact inferior to most others in that it hasnspawned a slave morality, and quite logicallynin modern times, has surrenderednto permissive liberalism and its twin,ntotalitarian socialism.nEmancipation from Christianity establishesnND’s radical credentials andnit is looked upon as a new beginningnfor Europe. The movement is not primarilyninterested in socioeconomics orneven politics, and this helps its causenwith disenchanted new leftists and depoliticizednyouths. Its focus is on civilization,nprimarily the restoration of Europe—freenof America, Russia and thenChristian interlude. The modalities ofnthis return to Europe’s genuine self arenonly vaguely outlined. ND’s positionnappears sane and constructive as long asnit criticizes the Freudian postulates innthe family, the antielitist bias in schools,nthe mindless egalitarianism of publicnlife, the stereotyped left-lib discoursenin domestic policy and international relations.nThings get rougher—and morennaively Utopian—when the preconditionsnof change are formulated in biomanipulativenterms.nThey are obviously not what LouisnPauwels, Figaro’s cultural editor, had innmind as ideal Europeans when he excor­nLibcral CulturenPearls of WisdomnMs. Shirley MacLaine in anrecent interview with Women’snWear Daily:n… what is a bigger problemntoday than human sexuaUty?nExcept inflation. If RichardnNixon had not been sexuallynrepressed, he wouldn’tnhave had to bomb Vietnamnor Cambodia.nHow does she know that Nixonnis sexually repressed.’ Whynnniated Christianity and bowed to Voltairenand Rougier. Yet, ND’s enthusiasmnfor a new era of new men catchesnthe fancy of many young men andnwomen across the continent. No matternwhere I traveled I met inquiring peoplenwanting to know more about the NewnRight and Alain de Benoist. In Spainnthe young men who advise the centerrightistnAUianza Popular are all friendsnof ND and eager for recent news ofnBenoist. In Italy the movement has nowna sister organization with two or threenpublications involved in anti-Marxistnstudies and anti-Christian propaganda.nIn Portugal and Greece young lawyers,nstudents and journalists have formednND associations; the same is true innthe Scandinavian countries and in Belgium.nIn Munich I listened to a primentime television report on ND and itsnGerman sympathizers, chief amongnthem Armin Mohler, a national conservativenostracized by the academic community.nI have said that ND’s impact is primarilynon impatient and talented youngnpeople who have had their fill of leftistnprofessors, denationalized media andnone-sided publishing policy. In thenwasteland of left-liberal-censored culturalnlife they have set up their own pub-ndoesn’t she come up with somensubstantiations? Or did she justnread about it in the newspapers?nShe continues:nThe more sex becomes annon-issue in people’s lives,nthe happier they are.nIs that so? It always seemed tonus that the more meaningfulnsexuality becomes, the more occasionnfor happiness, while sexualntorpor can lead to suicides.nMs. MacLaine’s comments cannbe read in WWD’s “Arts & People”nsection. What do her wordsnhave in common with either artnor people? Dni35nJanttary/February 1981n