The basic aim of Coubertin’s Olympic doctrine and practice is the creation of positive society by way of the creation of a “new (positive) man”. Hence “utilitarian pedagogy” occupies the central position in Coubertin’s Olympic doctrine. The ultimate aim of his theory is a final and irrevocable destruction of everything that can question the established class order and the creation of society in which the guiding principles of the French Revolution will be realized. Coubertin’s “new man” represents the final form of the capitalist degeneration of man.
In spite of dealing with the normative sphere, Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy” is based on the creation of the model of man that does not depart from individual, intellectual, spiritual, emotional and physical specificities of man, but from the class, racial and patriarchal structure of society. In that sense, it contains two separate fields: pedagogy for the ruling rich “elite” (bourgeoisie) and pedagogy for the oppressed (working “masses”, “lower races”, and women). The aim of the former is to create from the European bourgeoisie a “master race”, which will be capable of holding dominion over the workers and woman for ever and will conquer the world; the aim of the latter is to produce “good workers”, obedient “lower races”, and a subordinated wife. Olympic pedagogy does not depart from man’s unalienated human and civil rights, but from the strategic interests of monopolistic capitalism that appear in the form of the absolutized principle “might is right” embodied in the bourgeois “elite”. The unbridgeable existential antagonism between parasitic classes and the oppressed conditions an uncompromising and naturalistic character of Coubertin’s Olympic pedagogy: the oppressed literally have the same position relative to the ruling “elite” as the herbivorous animals have relative to the beasts. That is why Coubertin claims that people as individuals are only “formally” equal. In other words, people are similar to one another, but they are different in terms of their human value – which depends on the race, class and gender. Their “difference” is conditioned by their different social roles imposed on them by the ruling order: the rich are predestined to conquer and rule while the submitted are predestined to work. From it follows that “perfectioning” of the bourgeois class involves the improvement of its qualities as the master race (class), while “perfectioning” of the oppressed involves the destruction of their libertarian dignity and the development of a “peace-loving” character and a slavish conscious. The creation of “masters”, on the one hand, and the creation of “civilized” slaves, on the other, that is the most important “practical” aim of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy”.
What is common to class pedagogical models, and what becomes the basis of the “universal” (Olympic) pedagogical model, is that they tend to deal with man’s playful nature (imagination, Eros, spontaneity), the feeling of solidarity, critical reason, creative potentials, libertarian dignity, moral reasoning: they correspond to the ideal of a positive man, who represents the abolishment of the emancipatory heritage of mankind. Coubertin’s humanité is not only the abolishment of the normative model of the human, which is the basis of human self-recognition, but a form of man’s physical and mental degeneration. Pathological psychological profile of the imperialist bourgeois, based on insatiable greediness, becomes the basis of the mental profile of Coubertin’s “model” citizen. The original need of a human being for another human being turns, by way of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy”, into the “need” to sadistically abuse the others, which culminates in one’s “need” to kill people and find in it one’s utmost “pleasure”. Coubertin’s model of the relation of pater familias to his wife clearly shows that his “utilitarian pedagogy” involves man’s mental degeneration: Coubertin’s bourgeois not only does not seek to have an emotional and erotic relation to his wife, but he is incapable of it, and can treat her only as an incubator and the object of sexual gratification. Speaking of Coubertin’s relation to women, Boulongne says that Coubertin was an “incorrigible misogynist”, (104) which indicates his painful handicap and which, among other things, conditioned Coubertin’s profiling of the mental faculties of his model bourgeois.
The basic anthropological starting point of Coubertin’s conception is the view that man is by nature a “lazy animal”. During its fight for survival the white race, embodied in the European bourgeois “elite”, experienced mutation and acquired the features that make it “superior” to the “colored races”. The bourgeois is for Coubertin only one of the historical forms in which the rich “elite” appears and thus is the embodiment of the “master race”. The members of the “master race” are more intelligent, physically stronger and “pureblooded”, which enables them to preserve and develop their “noble” racial features and, most importantly, they possess a superior combatant character. The bourgeoisie, thus, has genetic predispositions that make the foundation for overcoming its “lazy” animal nature and develop a master character, unlike the members of the working “masses”, “lower races” and women – who are genetically predestined to be slaves. Coubertin relied on the model of ancient society and on the model of the aristocracy and the slave. That is why he insists so much not only on the exclusive character and conscious of the bourgeois, but also on his physical exclusivity. In the Social Darwinist context, it is the creation of the model of beast and the model of sheep. A bourgeois who is reduced to a trained beast ready to attack his victim at any moment – that is the highest and ultimate challenge for Coubertin’s pedagogy. The basic role of sport is to help the “master race” develop a master character, and the oppressed – an obedient character. Sport should “teach” the latter to respect the order ruled by the stronger and should “draw” them into the spiritual orbit of capitalism at the level of “civilized” slaves. Bearing in mind Coubertin’s endeavour to create from Olympism a universal political means for resolving all social problems and enabling a stable development of capitalism, it can be said that Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy” is basically a social pedagogy (prophylactic), and his anthropology is but a side product of his social (political) theory.
Coubertin points out that Arnold’s greatest contribution was his creating from physical exercises (sport) the means for the moral building of man (bourgeois) – which became the indisputable model for Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy”. Praising Arnold’s pedagogy, Coubertin concludes: “The muscles are made to do the work of a moral educator.” (105) However, Coubertin’s assertion that “…character is not formed by the mind, but primarily by the body” (106) is totally meaningless, since the basis of Coubertin’s pedagogy is not a respect for and a spontaneous development of natural needs and specific qualities of the body, but their distortion through special physical exercises in order to obtain a certain character. It is a normative model that is imposed on man from his early age in the form of “circumstances” that involve a ruthless struggle for survival in which man must oppress the others – or be oppressed himself – as well as the physical exercises that are reduced to a militaristic drill. Physical exercises (drill) on which Coubertin insists are the projection of the ruling ideology that is meant to deal with the emancipatory heritage of civil society, which is essential to a modern (emancipated) personality. They become the means by which the ruling order seeks to repress and distort those qualities of man (organism) which could enable the development of an integral and truly happy individual and create from him the tool for achieving their anti-human (anti-social) aims.
Coubertin admires Arnold because in his reforms of physical education at Rugby he found the source of the colonial strength of the British Empire. Speaking of Arnold, Coubertin comes to the following conclusion: “He was one of the great Englishmen who, in the middle of the 19th century, did great things for the welfare of humanity. Arnold sought to find in sport the greatest moving force of human education – something that nobody had done before. Also, he was the first to have sought to build man and citizen not only in physical, but also in moral and social terms. Thus he used sport as the most efficient and most reliable element of physical and spiritual perfectioning that man, when the development of young people is concerned, has at his disposal”. It is a “wonderful transformation of the curriculum” in England, “which is the first and basic cause of the development of all those powers that in recent times have been beneficial to the British Empire”. (107) Following Thomas Arnold’s pedagogy, Coubertin comes to the conclusion that the “muscles and character” are the most important things for those who want to “conquer the world”. “Why something”, asks Coubertin, “that has proved so successful in Great Britain cannot be applied in France?” (108) Coubertin, a fanatic nationalist, is obsessed with the idea to insure France “the leading role among nations”. Through a natural or divine law a highly developed industrial civilization must gain a colonial empire in order to reach natural resources and show its strength. In that respect, Coubertin follows the spiritual tradition of Bar, Gobineau and Liotey. According to Boulongne, the third French Republic “made all his wishes come true”. (109) According to Boulongne, in the period up to 1915 Coubertin argues for a “militant imperialism”. (110) He is not in favor of a war revenge against Germany, since in that way both countries would only lose, but proposes to Germany to share Africa and Asia with France. (111) Coubertin creates his pedagogy for the bourgeois “elite” in the attempt to make colonial phalanges with a “holy mission” to conquer the world. That is why, for Coubertin, a pacifist education of the bourgeois youth is the worst of crimes. “Boys, who learn to command at matches, learn to command the Indians” – this is the basic “pedagogical” postulate of Coubertin’s Olympic pedagogy intended for the “master race”. (112)
The basic purpose of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy” is not the creation of a “healthy body”, but the creation of a positive character and conscious and certain human relations, ultimately – a positive society. Hence in Coubertin, the process of upbringing (the creation of a “positive” character) precedes the process of education. “The first of the truths that Coubertin adopted” by reading Arnold is, according to Boulongne, “the truth that upbringing is more important than education (…) he accepted that practice unreservedly: Coubertin praises the British system of education because in it upbringing, which creates masculine people and builds strong-willed characters, acquired primacy over education, which offers knowledge and enriches the spirit. The task of the educator “is not to create slaves, but masters!” – masters who, much earlier than law allows them, become free to use subordinates and to abuse them.” (113) Boulongne concludes that Coubertin’s most important pedagogical rule, which he took over from Arnold, is the one according to which “a young man is a sole master of his fate”. According to Boulongne, it follows that “freedom must determine the relations between pupils”. (114) “Freedom” becomes a “natural right” of the stronger to submit the weaker disregarding their elementary human and civil rights. According to Coubertin’s doctrine, man is not born free, but as a master or a slave, depending on his class, race or gender, and this is the unchangeable basis of social structuring. From there follows that an upbringing aimed at creating free people is pointless (and this for Coubertin, an utilitarist, means “harmful”). The point is to create people who are deprived of any sense of solidarity and tolerance, as well as of any moral responsibility for their action. What was for Coubertin of greatest importance in Arnold’s pedagogy is the privilege of physically stronger pupils to compel their peers by sheer force to submit to them, as well as the rejection of the right of the weaker to oppose tyranny. School becomes a peculiar “civilized” menagerie and thus the preparation of the bourgeois youth for the fulfillment of its most important “social duty”: to establish an indisputable power over the workers and women and realize its “colonial mission”. As we have seen, the essence of Coubertin’s elitism is “natural selection”: “in the college, it is the same as in the world – the weak are eliminated”. (115) Sport becomes a training for life and the means for making a “natural selection” in order to form an “elite” made up of the strongest and most unscrupulous, who will be the moving force of the colonial expansion and the chief force for insuring social peace at home. Urlike Prokop says on that: “In order to strengthen sport as an institution, in order to practically apply its disciplinary functions – hierarchical thought, control of imagination and spontaneity, readiness to perform tasks – and in order to prepare the civil France for bureaucratization and for leading an imperialist policy, Coubertin sought to introduce at the international level a mechanism that Thomas Arnold successfully applied on the field of public schools – competition”. (116) Coubertin: “There is only one means left: international competition. There lies the future. Contacts are to be established between the young French athletics and nations that for a long time have been engaged in sport. It should be insured that these contacts are regularly renewed and that (their) reputation is not questioned.” (117)
In Arnold’s pedagogy, Coubertin found one more detail which was to become the foundation of his pedagogy: “Sportsmen are repeatedly taught by the very circumstances, and thus the indispensability of commands, control and order becomes evident”. (118) Fighting for the application of Arnold’s system of upbringing in the French schools, Coubertin concludes that in the groups formed on the basis of competition the young are taught what is acceptable for society: to accept the order ruled by the older, more intelligent and stronger. (119) “The quality” of Coubertin’s pedagogy lies in that he does not seek to exert a direct influence on people’s (children’s) conscious by propagating certain norms, but by placing them in the “circumstances” that will compel them to behave in a certain way (which means to accept from childhood certain mutual relations); this will result in the creation of the character of a loyal and usable citizen, and it will become the foundation on which a corresponding normative conscious will be perched. Nietzsche: “Not to ‘correct’ people, not to speak to them of some kind of morality, as if there were some “morality in itself” or some ideal type of man in general: the point is to create circumstances in which the stronger people are indispensable: they, in turn, will need a morality that gives them vigor (or, to put it better, a certain physical-spiritual discipline), and they will therefore have it!” (120) Coubertin is close to Nietzsche, apart from the fact that he attaches special importance to the habit of obeying commands: “Boys who join a regiment are already acquainted with the instruments of sport, and since they are accustomed to obeying commands, they possess a double advantage; not only do they already know part of what they are supposed to learn, but they learn the rest much more easily; not only are they better prepared to endure the efforts, but, for them, the effort will be lesser.” (121) Circumstances, which means a ruthless struggle for survival, abolish every possibility of choice and impose on man the existing order as the only possible order. “The evidence” excludes both the knowledge and thinking of causality, appearance and essence, falsity and truthfulness, the good and the bad… For Coubertin, life which is based on the principles of natural selection and “might is right” is the origin of sport. It becomes a direct (“spontaneous”) form of creating from society a “civilized” herd, and this becomes the basis of “neutrality” of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy”. Human beings should become enemies before they develop their humanity, so that a corresponding normative conscious can be perched on an animal character without any human resistance. Coubertin’s pedagogy does not depart from society as a community of equal and close people (freedom, equality, brotherhood), but from the existential requirements placed before man by capitalist society. “The fight of all against all” and “man is another man’s wolf”, as the most important life principles of capitalist society, determine the character of a “model citizen” with the corresponding “model” of the body and physical movement, which should be sought for.
Coubertin claims that his pedagogy is aimed at developing a man’s character regardless of his values. “Even criminals are brave” – concludes Coubertin. It is no accident that it is the criminals, and not the fighters for freedom, that Coubertin compares with the members of the ruling class: a ruthless aggressive and plundering mentality is a common feature of criminals, aristocrats and bourgeois. Just as, according to Schiller, “an upbringing by way of art becomes an upbringing for art”, so does an upbringing by way of a mindless combatant physical activism becomes an upbringing for killing and producing the “cannon fodder” (Bloch). The original standpoint of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy” – that the “battle at Waterloo was won on the sports fields of Eton” – clearly indicates the basic purpose of Coubertin’s Olympic doctrine. The way in which a “strong will” and “courage” are acquired and developed is crucial for creating a personality. Coubertin’s “objectivism” is misleading, as it is not the muscles but the nature of physical exercises and the way of training, more precisely, the relation of man to man and the relation of man to himself, considered in the comprehensiveness of his human development that influences the creation of man’s personality. That is why boxing is the main discipline of Coubertin’s utilitarian pedagogy from an early age and the chief means for children’s upbringing, and not gymnastics or mountaineering, particularly not art. It is no accident that Coubertin, who constantly refers to antiquity, never mentions music as a means of man’s upbringing. What is most important for Coubertin is to prevent man from developing a sense of companionship and solidarity – and that is the main reason for Coubertin’s arguing against team sports. Homo homini lupus – this is the starting point of Coubertin’s “value-neutral” conception.
The principle of “natural selection” represents the crucial part of Coubertin’s “competition”. Man’s need to develop his universal creative powers, and thus gain respect in the community, “turns” by way of sport into man’s “need” to “be better than others”, by fighting against them and beating them. Sport becomes a symbolic form of the struggle for domination by eliminating the weak from the fight for a place under the sun. It becomes the way of dealing with man’s cultural and libertarian being, and the creation of egoistic individuals to whom man is an “opponent” and thus the means for satisfying their private interests. Instead of man being to man, via his libertarian and creative practice, the mirror of his humanity, he, via sport, becomes a (curved) mirror of inhumanity. The existential logic that applies in the animal world becomes the basic source and support of sport. With it, man’s “lazy” animal nature is to be overcome, and man is to be turned into a super-beast that appears as the highest form in the development of the living world. Speaking of Arnold, Coubertin points out that the purpose of his pedagogy is the creation of such relations between people that correspond to the Social Darwinist model of living, which means man’s obedient submission to the existential spirit of capitalism. Hence for him boxing (together with rowing with which the will to a “greater effort” is developed) is the “basis of an efficient and rational culture” which children (including girls) should practice, unlike most other exercises”, “from the age of eight or nine”. Coubertin has in mind the so called “French boxing” in which the kicks are produced not only by fists, as is the case in “English boxing”, but with legs. (122) That boxing, “the fine man’s sport”, was a great inspiration for Coubertin’s imaginative spirit can be seen from his insisting that the performance of Beethoven’s “Ninth symphony”, and particularly its “unique finale”, be supplemented by “several wonderful boxing stances”. (123) Even when boxing is concerned Coubertin only states the “fact” that “even in young people and in man there is a combatant instinct” which is “normal” and thus acceptable. “Therefore”, concludes Coubertin, “the upbringing of boys is not complete unless it is to some extent connected with martial sports”. (124) Obviously, it is not a libertarian or creative “combatant instinct” but the instinct for submission and oppression of the weaker – which is dominant in the Social Darwinist and cosmological anthropological models. A boxer is for Coubertin, as well as for Hitler, one of the most authentic “civilized” phenomena of the “overman”.
We have seen that Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy” does not only deal with critical conscious, but seeks to create a character that will reject critical consciousness in the same way in which an organism rejects an alien body. A proper upbringing does not consist in developing man’s self-conscious and his creative powers, but in establishing man’s unity with the present world along with the elimination of the (critical) thought that can destroy that unity and the repression and destruction of all in man that can produce such a thought. Upbringing becomes the means for crippling human individuality and molding man according to the model of Coubertin’s “positive man”. The process of upbringing must be in accordance with the created character, which means that the development of critical thought and a changing attitude to the existing world is eliminated. With it, the vision of the possible is closed within the horizon of the present world. By advising the Nazis how to strengthen their power, Coubertin formulates the view that expresses the gist of his “utilitarian pedagogy” and represents a magic formula for the solution of all social problems: “You cannot successfully establish control over people by institutions unless you control heads.” (125) Coubertin’s pedagogical doctrine represents the breaking of the connection between pedagogy and culture, established by the sophists, which is the corner stone of modern pedagogy: it does not strive to build versatile personalities, but is reduced to training which produces people whose body, character and spirit are crippled.
Hitler’s concept of a pedagogical reform and the creation of a “new man” represent the essence of Coubertin’s pedagogical concept and the model for his pedagogical practice. Hitler: “My great educational work I begin with the young people. Look at these boys and girls! What a material! With it I can make a new world. My pedagogy will be merciless. Weakness must firmly be eliminated. In my ordensburgen young people will be raised who will frighten the world. I want a mighty, masterful, daring, merciless youth. Nothing about them must be weak and soft. A free, magnificent beast must always glare from their eyes. I want my youth to be strong and beautiful. I will use all available physical exercises to build it. I want an athletic youth. It is the first and most important thing. In that way I abolish thousands of years of human development. Thus I have a pure, noble natural material before myself. Thus I can create something new.” And he continues: “I do not want intellectual education. Knowledge spoils the young. I rather let them learn only those things that they, following their playful instinct, accept with their free will. But, to control them – that is something they must learn. They must learn to control their fear of death in the hardest of trials. It is the level of a heroic youth. And it produces the level of free people, who are the measure and center of the world, creative people, God-like people. In my ordensburgen wonderful God-man who controls himself will stand as the image of a cult and prepare the youth for the coming stage of masculine maturity.” (126) Hitler speaks similarly in “Mein Kampf “: “People’s state did not found its whole educational work on pumping pure knowledge, but on the formation of a body as fit as the fiddle. Only then can we start to build spiritual abilities”. He goes on as follows: “People’s state must start from the assumption that one not so much scientifically educated, but physically healthy man with a strong, determined character, full of audacity and strong will, is more valuable for the people’s community than one intellectual whimp.” (127)
The Nazi pedagogical doctrine is almost equivalent to the original intention of Coubertin’s “utilitarian pedagogy”. That is why it is no accident that the Nazis showed so much understanding for Coubertin’s doctrine. In his letter to Hitler, from 17 March 1937, Coubertin does not hide how delighted he is because of the Nazi’s “appreciation” of his pedagogy: “Excellence, I was deeply moved by the visit of the State Minister H. Esser on behalf of Your Excellence and I hurriedly express my gratitude. Germany thus joins – and in the most splendid way – the celebration of my jubilee marked on January 20 at the University of Lausanne. On that occasion I was invited to crown my fifty-year work, related almost completely to the education reforms and improvements. Germany has shown appreciation of my work on several occasions and I owe her my deepest gratitude. I hope my health will allow me to consider and accept the kindest invitation handed to me on behalf of Your Excellence. I take it as another proof of Your kindness. I humbly ask Your Excellence to accept my respect and deepest loyalty.” (128) In his interview published on the occasion of the Nazi Olympic Games in Berlin, Coubertin, trying to court the Nazis, follows the Nazi naturalism and insists on the “passionate cry” of the winner. It is no accident that Coubertin speaks of a “passionate cry” in the context of glorifying the Nazi Olympic Games and Nazi regime: it is in complete accordance with the “look of a magnificent beast” of Hitler’s “Aryans”. The “passionate cry” becomes a peculiar “call of the wildness” and a return to the natural (animal) state in which all civilizatory barriers to the “overman” that can make him sway in his fanatical determination to rule the world are removed. Coubertin and the Nazis agreed on the most vital point: the “new world” should be created through the creation of a new “master race” that will for ever deal with the emancipatory heritage of mankind and establish a total and eternal rule of the white bourgeois “elite” over the workers, the woman and the “lower races”. In his “Epistle to the Carriers of the Olympic Torch” Coubertin enthusiastically welcomes the birth of a new fascist world: “We are living wonderful hours, for unexpected events are happening around us. While, as in the morning fog, the shape of (new) Europe and new Asia appear, it seems that mankind will finally realize that the crisis it is struggling with is above all the crisis of upbringing”. (129)
One of the main reasons for Coubertin’s decision to bequeath his writings to the Nazis and proclaim them the “guardians” of his Olympic idea (130) is precisely their open “appreciation” of his pedagogical doctrine. Coubertin’s texts published in the Nazi papers, in which he advises the Nazis how to use sport and physical exercises to create “a beautiful Aryan race”, as well as his broadcast speech with which the Nazi Olympic Games were closed, clearly suggest close affinity between Coubertin’s and Nazis’ world views. A destruction of spirituality and cultural consciousness and the turning of man into a fanatical crusader of the capital who is not restrained by any civilizatory norms, human dignity and human feelings, are the common features of these two ideologies. Coubertin’s endeavour to destroy mankind’s cultural traditions by way of sport corresponds to the vandal Nazi feasts, at which millions of books were burnt.
Differences in Coubertin’s and Nazi’s pedagogical models spring from the nature of their expansionism: Coubertin’s model of the bourgeois corresponds to a colonialism that seeks to conquer and exploit natural resources through the exploitation of the “lower races”, on which its “civilizatory” role is based; Hitler’s model of the “Aryans” corresponds to the genocidal nature of Nazi expansionism. Hence the differences in their conception of Olympism: Coubertin’s Olympism opens the possibilities of a spiritual integration of the “lower races” into the established order; Hitler not only rejects every possibility of including the “lower races” into the spiritual orbit of the “master race” by way of Olympism, but sees in it an exclusive means for the racial integration and militarization of the “Aryans”, necessary for the destruction of the “lower races”. Hence the Nazi model of the Olympic Games seeks its foundations in the original racist character of the ancient Olympic Games and acquires the name “National-socialist Combatant Games” (“Nationalsozialistische Kampfspiele”), which were to have been for ever held at the “German stadium” (“Deutsche Stadion”) in Nuremberg (with 400 000 seats), whose construction was committed to the leading Hitler’s architect Albert Speer. (131) Coubertin departs from the bourgeoisie as the representatives of the parasitic classes that despise labour and need the “lower races” as the labour force. “The Aryans”, on the other hand, are not only the “master race” for whom the slaves will work, but are also the “working people”, who with their work can insure their own existence and “progress”. Here we can clearly see the difference between Coubertin, an “elitist”, and Hitler, a “populist”. Coubertin insists on class differences and on sport as the means for militarizing the bourgeoisie and pacifying (depolitizing) the working ”masses”; the Nazis insist on racial and national integration of the “German people” (Deutsche Volk) and on sport as a form of its militarization. Instead of Coubertin’s strict distinction between bourgeoisie and aristocracy, on the one hand, and working “masses” on the other, in Nazis there is a unity between the “German people” and their “leader”, which is expressed in the maxim “Ein Volk – ein Führer!” Furthermore, the prototype of the Nazi “overman” is not an “international” aristocrat who appears in the shape of a gentleman, as is the case in Coubertin, but the mythical figure of Siegfried, who is the incarnation of the racial spirit of the “Aryans”. In addition to his “low origin” (Boulongne), the Nazi “overman” has, according to Coubertin’s doctrine, the shortcoming of not being dominated by individualism and egoism, but by the collectivistic spirit of “comradeship” (Kameradschaft) and commitment to the “people’s community” (Volksgemeinschaft), which for the ”Aryans” acquires the same character that polis had for the man of antiquity. Unlike Coubertin, who insists on individual, and opposes team sports, the Nazis insist on team sports, which become the means for creating a “combatant community” (Kampfgemeinschaft), while the “common (racist-militaristic) spirit” becomes the way of submitting the individual to the collectivity which is subjected to the supreme authority (Führer). In his pedagogy Coubertin departs from the bourgeois who already possesses an “elitist” conscious and thus insists on the development of an individual combatant mentality. In that context, the aristocratic model of “chivalry” is paradigmatic for Coubertin’s pedagogy. He, above all, sought to develop a combatant bourgeois with self-initiative, and not an organization to which he was to be subordinated. It is one of the main reasons why Coubertin was against team sports.
Coubertin’s positive bourgeois deals also with the Christian model of man. Instead of Christian modesty and humility, the bourgeois is dominated by the spirit of aggressive elitism and haughtiness; instead of the spirit of the oppressed – the spirit of the master; instead of asceticism – greediness; instead of the cult of the spirit – the cult of the muscular body; instead of the strivings for the other world – an endless glorification of the present world; instead of sin and redemption – the abolishment of moral reasoning and responsibility; instead of a Christian God-man, Coubertin’s “overman” becomes the deification of the positive man.
Coubertin found the building material for his “overman” in the parasitic classes characterized by the “animal nature”, the status of the “master” and a conquering fanatism. His “new man” is the result of crossing the crippled and depersonalized ancient “hero”, the medieval knight, the English gentleman, the militant Jesuit, the greedy bourgeois, Nietzsche and Nazi’s “overman” – all the members of the “master race”, which by way of tyranny acquired power and wealth. A love of arms and a contempt for work – these are the main “virtues” of the rich “elite”, which proclaimed conquering and plundering the cardinal principles of life. Coubertin turns them into heroic figures that become the role models of the bourgeois youth. They are the synthesis of the best racial features and thus the personification of an idealized model of members of the “master race”. Hence the “strength of blood” becomes one of the main sources of the conquering (oppressive) force of the white race, while the preservation of “pure blood” is the basic presupposition of racial stability and racial domination. However, “great people” of the Modern Age do not draw their strength only from their racial roots, or aristocratic heritage, but from the expansionist power of monopolistic capitalism (the spirit of “progress”). Basically, it is a direct instrumentalization of the bourgeois youth on the part of capitalist monopolies, in their attempt to colonize the world and exercise totalitarian power over the working “masses” and women.
To create from the European bourgeois youth, through sport and militaristic physical drill, the “master race” capable of dealing with the emancipatory heritage of mankind and of creating from the world a concentration camp of the West-European colonial states – this is Coubertin’s life-long obsession. His Olympic ideal represents the bridge connecting the Victorian England and the imperialist France with the Nazi Germany, and the latter with today’s (American) “new world order”.