Claiming authenticity: the organizations of revolutionaries

The year 2002 can be considered to have been a critical moment; 13 years after the revolution there is a need to re-assert the revolutionary identity. The appropriate strategy is claimed to be the exposure of the ?impostors? through a campaign of file checking and effective civic involvement. This aim was asserted at the National Conference of ?Unifying the Revolutionaries in Romania?, held in Timisoara, on 16 December 2002. Here the leaders of this movement of the ?genuine revolutionaries?, as they called themselves, said:

?We have to get rid of the others, to retrieve the same dignity which we had then, to get it back now and to get united and to became a force having a say in public life.(?) We want to be a balancing factor, to continue our fight for the democratisation of the country and the social problems for which we stood up then.? (in December n.a)[7].

They asserted their own autonomy from the political power and the multiple identities of this union?s members:

?We are not interested in the colour of the political parties. (?) But we want to be useful to any government; (?) what we fight for is raising the quality of life of people, even by telling the truth.[8]

The re-assertion of the identity of genuine revolutionaries, which the conference intends to institutionalise, is made through self-definitions and a clear delimitation from ?the others?.

At the organisational level, markers of authenticity and distinction are provided:

?(?) There are 33 genuine associations, with signatures, with stamps, 34 having been founded according to law 42 up to 1990, when the problem of the material rights had not yet been taken into consideration. We are people who really fought in the revolutions and wanted to be together ? the others made an association for the sake of the big bone? This makes us different from the others who outnumber us, who are in far greater numbers than the genuine us. (?) This is not a question of Iliescu?s  or Nastase?s revolutionaries[10]

The dichotomy Us versus the Others is played across the boundaries of different revolutionary organizations; but it is recurrent at other levels as well. Several interviews with representatives of certain revolutionaries? organizations from Timisoara revealed that the relationship between political power and this category has constantly been perceived as asymmetrical. In terms of self-stereotypes, the revolutionaries define themselves as brave, strong-willed people, capable of becoming leaders: