Jonathan Bowden

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For the former footballer, see Jon Bowden.

Jonathan David Anthony Bowden (12 April 1962 – 29 March 2012)[1] was a British political figure who had been involved with a number of political parties and groups, and a leading speaker on the nationalist circuit. His great influence was the novelist, Bill Hopkins, who had been one of the Angry Young Men of the 1950s.

Early life[edit]

Bowden was born in Kent and was educated at Presentation College in Reading, Berkshire. In 1984, he completed one year of a B.A. history course at London University's Birkbeck College, but then left. He enrolled at Wolfson College, Cambridge, in autumn 1988, but left after a few months.

Early politics[edit]

He began his political career as a member of the Conservative Party in Tower Hamlets, as a member of the Bethnal Green and Stepney constituency association. In October 1990 (until 1992) he joined the Monday Club, where the following year he made an unsuccessful bid to stand for its Executive Council. In May 1991, he was appointed co-chairman, with Stuart Millson, of the Club's Media Committee.[2][3] During the early 1990s, he stated that he had been the deputy chairman of the Western Goals Institute[4] although this cannot be verified. In 1992 Bowden was expelled from the Monday Club.[5]

Revolutionary Conservative Caucus[edit]

Bowden and Millson co-founded the Revolutionary Conservative Caucus in November 1992[6] with, he said, the aim of introducing "abstract thought into the nether reaches of the Conservative and Unionist party".[4] In the group's first quarterly journal, The Revolutionary Conservative Review, it stated that "The Caucus has been established by Right-wing activists within the Conservative Party in order to disseminate information, ideology, and intellectual opinion within and beyond the party." However, the journal's name was almost immediately changed to The Revolutionary Conservative, and in issue number 1, they stated that the Caucus "is dedicated to national sovereignty, European culture, masculinity, ruthless elitism, and racial purity."

They were attacked by Sir Norman Fowler in the Sunday Express who said, "These people are not remotely typical of mainstream Conservatives", and by Glyn Ford, MEP, speaking at the 1993 Labour Party Conference: "The Tories have a Far-Right tendency....I have passed details of the Revolutionary Conservative Caucus to Special Branch." However the Conservative MP Rupert Allason was quoted in Searchlight magazine as saying "If they are against Maastricht, they can't be bad."[7] Issue no.3 of their journal was devoted entirely to the continuing power struggle within the Monday Club following the departure of Gregory Lauder-Frost at the end of May 1992. By the end of 1994, Millson and Bowden had parted company and issue no.4 was the last production of the Caucus.

Later activities[edit]

Bowden's book Right was published by the European Books Society in 1993. Bowden was also said to be prominent in the milieu responsible for the emergence of Right Now! magazine.[8]

He later joined the Freedom Party, for which he acted as Treasurer for a short period,[9] and subsequently, with Adrian Davies, was a member of the Bloomsbury Forum.[10] Bowden contributed an essay (Bill)"Hopkins - An Angry Young Man" to the book of 20 essays Standardbearers - British Roots of the New Right which he, with Adrian Davies and Eddy Butler, also edited. The book carried a Foreword by a former Vice-President of the Monday Club, Professor Antony Flew.[11]

Bowden subsequently joined the British National Party (BNP), and was for a period its Cultural Officer. In July 2007, he resigned from the BNP following a bitter dispute in which an associate of BNP leader Nick Griffin made defamatory allegations against Bowden on a blog.[12] It has been claimed by Martin Webster that Bowden was forced out of the party due to his support for Chris Jackson, who made an unsuccessful attempt to replace Griffin as leader.[13] After September 2008, Bowden resumed speaking at BNP events, but never rejoined the party. Since the May 2010 elections he had no further connection to the BNP.

Jonathan Bowden began working with the long-time activist Troy Southgate in 2004 and had become chairman of the New Right. In an October 2010 interview with Southgate, he said of the various ginger groups that he had been involved with, that they had succeeded in "the mixing together of ultra-conservative and neo-fascist ideas".[14] Bowden died on 29 March 2012, from a heart attack five days after speaking at a meeting of the New Right group on Charles Maurras and the Action Française.[5]

Articles[edit]

By Jonathan Bowden:

In The Revolutionary Conservative, Issue no.1, London, 1993.

  • "John Major - Alone in Toytown without Big Ears".
  • "Madonna and Sex; the Erotic Cavortings of a Deranged Bimbo".
  • Book Review of Oswald Spengler's "Man & Technics".
  • "Culture of the New Right" an article on Wyndham Lewis.

In The Revolutionary Conservative, Issue no.2.

  • "Why are we in Bosnia?".
  • "Whither The Royals - an Institution in Terminal Decline."

In The Revolutionary Conservative, Issue no.4, London,Summer/Autumn 1994.

  • "Animal Liberation" - an investigation of the fanatics.
  • "Spotlight on Tina Turner".
  • "Militant - an analysis" (with Stuart Millson).
  • "A Revolutionary Social & Economic Policy for Conservatives in the 21st century" (with John MacLaughlin).

Books[edit]

  • Mad, Avant-Garde Publishing (1989).
  • Aryan, Egotist (1990).
  • Sade, Egotist (1992).
  • Brute, Egotist (1992).
  • Skin, Egotist (1992).
  • Axe, Egotist
  • Craze, Egotist (1993).
  • Right, European Books Society (1993).
  • Collected Works, Avant-guarde (1995).
  • Standardbearers - British Roots of the New Right, edited by Adrian Davies, Eddy Butler & Jonathan Bowden; Beckenham, Kent, 180pps, (April 1999).
  • Apocalypse TV (2007).
  • The Art of Jonathan Bowden (1974 - 2007) (2007).
  • The Fanatical Pursuit of Purity (2008).
  • Al-Qa’eda Moth (2008).
  • Kratos (2008).
  • A Ballet of Wasps (2008).
  • Goodbye Homunculus! (2009).
  • The Art of Jonathan Bowden, Vol. 2 (1968 - 1974) (2009).
  • Lilith Before Eve (2009).
  • Louisiana Half-Face (2010).
  • The Art of Jonathan Bowden, Vol. 3 (1967 - 1974) (2010).
  • Our Name is Legion (2011).
  • Colonel Sodom Goes to Gomorrah (2011).
  • Locusts Devour a Carcass (2012).
  • Spiders are Not Insects (2012).

Art[edit]

Bowden was also an outsider artist and produced hundreds of nightmarish caricatures, many of which adorn the covers of his novels. These are collected in three coffee-table book volumes, which include his early graphic novels / comic strips as well as his adult work.

Film[edit]

Bowden appeared in two avant-garde films, Venus Flytrap (2005) and Grand Guignol (2009), each directed by the Italian film-maker Andrea Lioy.

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://efp.org.uk/jonathan-bowden-1962-2012/
  2. ^ Monday Club News July 1991 edition, p.2.
  3. ^ Monday Club Executive Council Minutes, 13 May 1991. This position did not, however, afford Bowden a seat on the Council
  4. ^ a b Interview with Bowden
  5. ^ a b Sonia Gable and Adam Carter "New Right chairman dies", Searchlight, 26 April 2012
  6. ^ The Revolutionary Conservative, issue no.2, 1993, p.16.
  7. ^ The Revolutionary Conservative, issue no.4, Summer/Autumn 1994, p.12.
  8. ^ [1]
  9. ^ Freedom Party website
  10. ^ [2]
  11. ^ Standardbearers - British Roots of the New Right, edited by Adrian Davies, Eddy Butler & Jonathan Bowden, Beckenham, Kent, April 1999, 180pps.
  12. ^ Lancaster Unity Blog
  13. ^ Vanguard News Network
  14. ^ Troy Southgate "Revolutionary Conservative", Wermod & Wermod Publishing, 27 October 2010

External links[edit]