July 12, 2009
Well that was a surprise. An amazing doco on the iPlayer about Robespierre and the French Revolution. Personally I have always believed in revolution, but never been into violent protest on principle. It has always been an untested theory though, lucky as I am to live somewhere where I still feel fairly free. The people in the UK I have met protesting who do believe in violent revolution are invariably playing out bad stuff from their childhood rather than coming out with any admirable principles.
South America, from what I have heard seems to be a bit different. People I have spoken to from there talk of a leftwing principled movement and a right wing capitalist/fascist movement of peoples who grow up in no uncertain terms that the other side want to kill you, and I would imagine a non violent ideal for anyone commited to change would be severly tested.
In terms of modern revolution, the French did it first and there is as is revealed, some frightening corelartion with later attempts to create a fairer society out of an impreialist one. It was fascinating that the only guy who was continually standing up for Robespierre,Slavoj Žižek betrayed so much in his body language that he was probably the same sort of person as Robespierre. An animated angry crank who, if he had any power would be fucking dangerous.
Overall this piece is fascinating, thought provoking and has a brilliant flow edit wise. It really encapsulates the fear any sane person with a revolutionary spirit has about overthrow and idealism inevitably leading to more of the same.