Aryanism

   Social movement. Russian Aryanism, though influenced by the Nazi variant of the 1930s, represents a distinct social movement with its origins in the late Soviet period. The term Aryan refers to descendents of the proto-Indo-Europeans, a prehistoric ethno-linguistic group that migrated to and then came to dominate southern Asia and the European continent. Proponents of the ideology contend that the Slavs (sometimes called the Aryan-Veneds) represent the oldest, and thus purest, descendents of the proto-Indo-Europeans, who originated either in the southern Russian steppe or, less likely, in Arctic Eurasia. The ideology is closely linked with neo-paganism and has served as a tool for the far right in postindependence Russia, being embraced by neofascist and other extremist ethnonational organizations and skinhead movements. The connection to ultranationalism is further buttressed by the fact that the Nazi regime in interwar Germany expropriated the term to support its racist and anti-Semitic ideology.
   See also Eurasianism.

Historical Dictionary of the Russian Federation. . 2010.

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