Event Date: 15 – 17 May 2019
Richmond University – The American University in London
Richmond TW10 6JP
A Century of Radical Right Extremism: New Approaches
Alex DiBranco (Yale) – Misogynist Frames and Glorification of Violence in Contemporary Male Supremacist Mobilizations
European and American scholars in recent years have increased attention to far right movements, dealing particularly with contemporary mobilizations of white supremacy, xenophobia, and right-wing populism. However, the role of misogyny as a motivating ideology has not received the same attention, despite the substantial growth of male supremacist organizing and anti-feminist conspiracy theories. In the United States, the constellation of male supremacist mobilizations that have thrived online includes the Men’s Rights Movement (MRM), pickup artists (PUA), incels, and The Red Pill, a community that strongly favored the election of President Donald Trump, who ran a campaign distinguished by misogynist and racist rhetoric. These forums overlap with the umbrella movement of male supremacist, white supremacist, and anti-Semitic online communities called the “alt-right.” Though organized predominantly online, these movements have tangible repercussions, including in terms of promoting and enacting sexual and physical violence. Mass killings connected to the incel community—men who identify as being “involuntarily celibate”—took place in Toronto and Tallahassee, Florida, in 2018, while prior high-profile attacks in the past decade, such as that of Anders Breivik in 2011, reflect similar virulent anti-feminist conspiracism and misogynist loathing. The paper analyzes the rhetoric, including glorifying or defending violence, used across the network of online misogynist forums and offers an initial argument for reconsidering the theoretical lens and attention given to misogynist movements.