This paper reframes the intellectual genealogy of BaÊthism in modern Syria through a close reading of the writings of one of its founding figures, Michel ÊAflaq. Rereading ÊAflaq's most important texts is part of a broader reconsideration of the intellectual history of modern Syria between nationalism and liberalism, revolution and reaction. While recognizing the traces of nineteenth-century German idealist philosophy and Romantic nationalism in ÊAflaq's thought, this piece complicates the conventional understanding of his work by showing a striking resemblance with the left-personalism of Emmanuel Mounier and the Esprit group. This unexplored connection constitutes a missing link in the intellectual genealogy of BaÊthism. As such, this article contributes to a more expansive and complicated global history of personalism. At the same time, this reconsideration of Michel ÊAflaq suggests a more compelling account of the making of modern Syria, a history with roots more tangled than historians have hitherto imagined.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies
- Sociology and Political Science