The RN cultural project, “an apartheid at odds with a living culture”

What does the cultural policy of the National Rally (RN) look like? In its programs, culture plays an even more derisory role when in those of its competitors. The word “culture” did not appear once in the party president’s program, Jordan Bardellain the 2021 Île-de-France regional elections.

If, despite everything, we try to draw, from scattered documents and disparate declarations, the broad outlines of the cultural policy of this far-right party, one thing jumps out. Above all, the RN embodies resistance: against the snobbery of Parisian bobos, against globalized mass culture, against everything that is community or that is not anchored in the local.

And against, perhaps more than anything, contemporary art – namely, says a party art critic, elitist works that look like giant spermatozoa and chicken bones drawn by a 5-year-old child. Logically, the RN requests the elimination of the Regional Contemporary Art Funds (Frac), which could be replaced by collections of figurative art.

On the positive side, the far right likes “the beautiful, the true, the good”. And particularly the old stones, which form the spine of the “moral recovery of the country”, and which she intends to restore. To this end, private owners must benefit from tax advantages and assistance, to carry out their restoration work, from young people aged 18 to 24 carrying out a “national heritage service”.

Artistic creation may call upon “popular patronage” (ladies and gentlemen, good luck fundraising!). Museums will exhibit more works from their reserves. (With what means and in what spaces? Mystery.) As for theater lovers, they will be able to choose their favorite plays from a repertoire (the actors would play on demand, like records from a life-size jukebox).

But the major cultural project of the RN is this: defending popular festivals and traditions, costumes and dances, French folklore. Against who ? Against the “foreign cultures”, in the ethnological sense: the competing lifestyles which attempt to attack the French way of life, and to oust it

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