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Do White Supremacist Women Adopt Movement Archetypes of Mother, Whore, and Fighter?

NCJ Number
302628
Journal
Studies in Conflict & Terrorism Dated: 2020
Author(s)
Date Published
2020
Annotation

This paper broadens understanding of modern white supremacist groups by examining the experiences of its female members. 

Abstract

The rhetoric of the far-right typically depicts women in tripartite archetypes: as beloved mothers or sex symbols for far-rightist men or, less commonly, as fighters for the cause. But the propaganda and speeches that produced these archetypes of women are largely produced by far-rightist men. Do they reflect the lived experiences of women in the far-right? And how do far-rightist women – and men – react to such rhetorical messages about the female role? This study used lenses of emotionality and embodiment to understand how women accept and resist group-level gender expectations in white supremacism. This is responsive to the broader goal in research on women in terrorism and political violence to specify how women act within and beyond ascribed gender-typical roles. The extensive interview data enabled this study to provide a rich depiction of the integrated natures of the public and private lives of white supremacist activist women, adding new information about a population of women engaged in political extremism and violent organizations about which little is known. (publisher abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 2020

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