The most prominent exponent of Septembrism in contemporary Hulstrian and Gao-Showan politics is the Hosianisch-Demokratisches Verbund. In Hulstrian and Gao-Showan society, Septembrism is represented by the Septembrist Movement, the successor to the 15th of September Movement, and its affiliate parties HDV, Liberale Volkspartei and Solidarität. These parties are not strictly speaking members of the Septembrist Movement, but they offer a dual membership to their members, and many of their members are dual members of the Septembrist Movement. Influential figures such as Emperor Kurosawa, Thomas Michels and Sebastian Goddestreu are considered to be Septembrists. At its height, Septembrism can be argued to have been an influence across the continent of Dovani, spreading even to Indrala where the fall of Gao nationalism in the Crownlands led to the displacement of the ruling dynasty with the Minzhu Dynasty (which, ironically, would later come to be one of the chief opponents of Septembrist Hulstria and Gao-Soto).
Into the 36th century, Septembrism remains important in Hulstrian and Gao-Showan politics, even prompting talk of a "Septembrist renewal" by Klaus Michels, HDV Leader and great-grandson of Septembrist founding father Thomas Michels. Septembrism came to an end with the fall of the Crownlands in the 39th century following growing indifference among the nation's elites, resulting in political stagnation. To opponents of what they perceive as "Western" influences in Dovani politics in particular, "Septembrist" became a pejorative term associated with Artania-centric multiculturalism. In Mikuni-Harusutoria, Septembrists were subject to persecution by the
Intellectuals in Dankuk revived the ideology shortly after the fall of the Crownlands, seeking inspiration in its tenets for dealing with the instability and anarchy the nation had experienced. This led to the formation of the Dankukin Septembrist Party and the multi-ethnic state known as the Union of Dankuk. Though the party's ideology is obviously inspired by the example of Hulstrian and Gao-Showan Septembrism, this "Dranish-Dankukin" form of Septembrism is not a one-on-one copy, being notably more democratically-minded than the movement that inspired it and drawing most of its support from highly-educated individuals. Analysts have warned that, since Septembrism in Dankuk lacks the broad base forged in revolution that left an indelible mark on the ideology in Hulstria and Gao-Soto, the Dankukin version of the ideology may reveal more of the system's elitist downside, such as its rejection of parties that refuse to share its democratic and multicultural ideals as somehow "not decent".
Ideological tenets of Septembrism Edit
What follows is a more in-depth discussion of the original Hulstrian and Gao-Showan Septembrist ideology that prevailed in the United Imperial Crownlands of Hulstria and Gao-Soto between the 35th and 38th century. Derivations in other nations or Septembrist-inspired ideologies might differ; there are also differences between Septembrist parties of differing ideologies.
The multi-ethnic nation Edit
The principal tenet of Septembrism is that there is (or should be) a single Hulstrian and Gao-Showan nation consisting of two peoples, the Hulstrians and Kunihito. This is reflected in the Septembrist motto from the national anthem, "the land of two peoples, united and free". The two peoples share a common history and cultural characteristics as well as a fierce pride in their own distinct cultures. Though eventually, a mixed race came into being, Septembrism has neither encouraged nor discouraged it, as the ideology considers it possible to develop a shared national cultural identity on top of existing ethnic and cultural patterns. The idea was formed as a reaction to the perception by the early leader of the movement that the Imperial Socialist Party dictatorship they came together to overthrew had come to pass because the sharp differences existing between Hulstrians and Kunihito were at times politicised. As a political expression of this idea, the autonomous Empires of Hulstria and Gao-Soto were abolished and the role of both Emperors was recast to be more national.
Though it is often confused with it, the Septembrist idea of the multi-ethnic or federal nation should be considered distinct from multiculturalism or cultural relativism. Though it encouraged respect and tolerance, the ultimate goal differs: while multiculturalism does not necessarily strive to create a single national identity, that is very strongly the case in Septembrism. It does not stop at a multicultural society: it seeks to create national unity that complements and bridges its diversity. In this sense, Septembrism can be described as a peculiar form of civic nationalism. Technically, multi-ethnic nation is a misnomer because the concept is not strictly speaking ethnic in the sense of referring to ethnicities - the peoples are understood in a far more cultural way.
Claims have also been made that the Septembrist concept of the multi-ethnic nation is inherently Artano-centric and colonialist. Septembrists have always contested such claims by pointing out universal values shared by both the Gao-Showan and Hulstrian cultures and the centuries of shared heritage in North Dovani of both the descendants of the Artanian settlers and the native Gao-Showa. In pointing this out, they reject any concept of sole ownership of the land by either of the two groups.
Non-aggressive resistance Edit
The original 15th of September Movement maintained a policy of non-violence following its genesis at the brutally suppressed 15th of September March. This stems from the idea that its moral superiority should be enough to win the fight, and that it should not lower itself to the level of its opponents. The original declaration of the Movement called for "peaceful, total non-cooperation" with the authorities and this has been a staple tactic of the Septembrist Movement since.
The original principle of non-violence was qualified to allow for self-defence when, armed by Dranland's intervention, the movement warned the regime it would defend itself if attacked. The third and fourth 15th of September Movements have both had their own militia, the Reichsbürgerwehr or Imperial Citizens' Defence Force, which upholds the principle of non-aggressive resistance by seeing the protection of civilians as its primary aim. Nevertheless, during the Hulstrian Civil War, the Provisional Diet of the Septembrist-controlled United Imperial Crownlands, while reaffirming the principle, declared war on the Nimitz regime for the genocide committed against Kunihito in Ostland. According to the Septembrists, this did not compromise the principle of non-aggressive resistance, since the regime had assaulted its own citizens, which was defined as aggression worthy of an armed response. This allowed the Reichsbürgerwehr to participate in the Civil War to a greater extent.
Civic democracy Edit
Septembrists subscribe to the principal tenets of liberal democracy: free and fair elections, protection of minorities, the concept of the Rechtsstaat or rule of law and constitutional government, among others. The principal aim of the Movement was the restoration of a liberal democracy. However, Thomas Michels also became deeply conscious of the destructive effects of racial tensions on democratic stability in Hulstria and Gao-Soto. This resulted in the concept of the multi-ethnic nation, which when applied to the Septembrist support for liberal democracy led to a number of characteristically Septembrist additions.
First of all, democracy was a means as well as an end in and of itself. The Septembrist ideology defined democracy as a sine qua non for coexistence between the Hulstrian and Gao-Showan peoples, using it as an instrument of integration between the two. The idea is that in shared enjoyment of liberal democratic rights, there will be a respect for the diversity among citizens that fosters the emergence of the multi-ethnic nation. This was as much a statement of practical experience for Septembrists as an ideological exercise: after all, in their shared struggle for democratic rights, Hulstrian and Kunihito Septembrists had come closer to another. This realisation that the willingness to defend eachother's rights also increased respect for eachother's diverse cultures has entrenched Septembrist commitment to democracy.
Secondly, the Septembrist understanding of democracy is underpinned by an unusual interpretation of the idea of popular sovereignty. Because of their experience that rule by a culturally homogenous majority fostered instability in the pre-Septembrist era, however enlightened and liberal that majority was, Septembrists shy away from the concept of a monolithic sovereign people and therefore from the conventional understanding of popular sovereignty. In their particular conception of popular sovereignty, popular sovereignty is plural. Rather than having a single monolithic sovereign people, this popular sovereignty is shared by the multi-ethnic nation, that is, by multiple peoples and communities that share this sovereignty. The understanding of this sovereignty is furthermore civic and inclusive in nature in that every citizen has a stake in it. This is made clear by the fact that most Septembrists, rather than speaking of "the people" speak of "the citizens" or "the peoples".
This leads to an understanding of democratic legitimacy that, in addition to all the requirements imposed by electoral and liberal understandings of democracy, also considers the extent to which decisions honour the stake that each community should have in the state and the extent to which it helps find common ground between the two. In essence, it adds an additional question of democratic legitimacy asking whether this will help citizens and communities live together in all their diversity. In the design of the Septembrist Constitution of 3416, these elements are clearly recognisable. While Septembrism isn't necessarily monarchist, the dual monarchy and particularly the requirement of both Emperors to swear that they will govern in the interest of all the peoples of the Crownlands, is an example of such an institution representing this conception of democracy. The Emperors symbolise the stake that the Hulstrian and Kunihito peoples, respectively, have in the nation, the state and the democratic government. The abolition of practical governance in both constituent Empires in favour of the national level and the Crownlands also served the same purpose. A less institutionalised example is the dislike and sometimes ostracism with which Septembrists have reacted to parties which were seen to be communalist, that is, favouring either community over the other, or populist (ie, claiming to represent a monolithic people).
An additional element of Septembrist democratic ideals is that the ideology is an exponent of militant democracy - the idea that a democracy has a right to defend itself within the law against elements which seek to abolish it. A guiding principle in this regard is the warning against complacency that forms a core part of the traditions surrounding September Day, summarised as the idea that freedom and democracy are not self-evident and must be maintained and defended. The Septembrist parties have regularly defended democracy by forming a cordon sanitaire against anti-democratic parties, something that Thomas Michels himself considered an appropriate way of dealing with attempts to abolish the democratic order. Whether the founding father of Septembrism envisioned the later development of a constitutional ban on anti-democratic political parties, implemented as a reaction to a Communist insurgency that saw the Movement resurrected as a political force for the first time since 3416, is a matter for debate, but most scholars of Septembrism point out that the matter simply wasn't pertinent in Michels's lifetime, as the dominance of the Septembrist parties and the proximity in time to the September Revolution itself negated the need for such a ban. Whether Michels envisioned it or not, the anti-democratic party ban is now considered a key part of Septembrist constitutional order.
Variants of Septembrism Edit
Though all Septembrists subscribe to the above tenets, in the centuries in which the ideology has existed several variants have developed. The pure mainstream Septembrism which holds no tenets beyond the ones described above is usually distinguished from these by describing it as Classical Septembrism, Orthodox Septembrism or Paleo-Septembrism.
Imperial Septembrism Edit
Imperial Septembrism describes an ideology which is a fusion of Septembrism and its erstwhile nemesis, the Imperial Socialism of the House of Yukio-Labsburg and its supporters. It is associated with the Imperial Constitution of Mikuni-Hulstria, the document drafted by Florian Goddestreu which, coincidentally, for the first time proclaimed the state to be Septembrist. Imperial Septembrism explicitly recognises the Hulstro-Showan population, the mainstay of the Yukio-Labsburg support, as one of multiple peoples, thereby giving the doctrine of the federal nation a distinctly ethnic aspect that it lacks in Classical Septembrism. It also lacks the dual monarchical system of the earlier Septembrist Constitution of Hulstria and Gao-Soto, tying national identity far more to the House of Yukio-Labsburg, specifically the reforming figure of the Jihibukai Emperor. It also gave a place to the earlier Ranzurado, an aristocratic body, as an upper house.
Historians consider that Imperial Septembrism was discredited when the Imperial Constitution of 4168 effectively became a dead letter after its restoration, with the Great Houses reasserting control. The ideology is therefore considered extinct as the Septembrist Movement returned to its earlier Classical Septembrist tenets.