Beacon Press: Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate
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Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate

How the Alt-Right Is Warping the American Imagination

Author: Alexandra Minna Stern

A critical exploration of the core ideas of the alt-right—necessary reading for all who seek to counter its appeal and expansion.

From a loose movement that lurked in the shadows in the early 2000s, the alt-right has achieved a level of visibility that has allowed it to expand significantly through America’s cultural, political, and digital landscapes. Yet it is also mercurial and shape-shifting, encompassing a spectrum of ideas and believers that resonate with white supremacy, right-wing nationalism, and anti-feminism. The alt-right offers a big and porous tent to those who subscribe to varying forms of race- and gender-based exclusion and endorse white identity politics.

To understand the contemporary moment, historian Alexandra Minna Stern knew she needed to get under—to excavate—the alt-right memes and tropes that had erupted online. In Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate, she does just that, applying the tools of the scholar to explore the alt-right’s central texts, narratives, constructs, and insider language. She explains the key ideas and strategies of metapolitics and “red-pilling,” reveals why the tag line for their most prominent publisher is “books against time,” looks closely at the paramount fantasy of the white nirvana, the ethnostate, and reveals how gender essentialism unveils the similarities between the alt-right and the alt-light. Lastly, she takes stock of the alt-right’s concerted attempts to normalize the movement, by casting off the vestiges of neo-Nazism and 20th-century white power movements and seeking respectability.

Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate shows us the underlying concepts and constructs that guide the alt-right and provides a tool for all who wish to combat its overlapping forms of racism, xenophobia, transphobia, and deep-seated anti-egalitarianism.
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“An important study that extends the knowledge from other recent books that have demonstrated a stubbornly pervasive network of white nationalists.”
Kirkus Reviews

Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate is the definitive guide to alt-right ideas today. Stern brilliantly documents how a younger generation of activists are repackaging the Far Right, waging a battle for cultural dominance. The internet is their home, where they mix fascist ideologies and faux scholarship to make their case for white/Christian/male dominance. Stern has analyzed an enormous swath of ethno-nationalist material, sparing the rest of us from having to engage in that odious task. Proud Boys is essential reading in the age of Trump.”
—Arlene Stein, author of Unbound: Transgender Men and the Remaking of Identity

“In this carefully researched book, the historian Alexandra Minna Stern studies a wide array of online web sites, documenting a rise in claims to whiteness as a basis of identity, as a claim to victimhood and as an argument for a ‘white ethnostate.’ Drawing ideas from films (‘red-pilling’ comes from The Matrix) and from the left (the need for ‘safe spaces’), the Alt-Right, she argues, is trying to normalize a frightening shift from talk of civic nationalism to talk of race-based nationalism. This is very important work we should all know about.”
—Arlie Hochschild, author of Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right, finalist for the National Book Award.

“Timely, well-researched, and insightful, Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate is a brilliant study of the alt-right’s beginnings and current attempts to push its message of racial separation, misogyny, white nationalism, and xenophobia into the American mainstream. It should be read in schools and book clubs across the nation.”
—Leo R. Chavez, author of The Latino Threat: Constructing Immigrants, Citizens, and the Nation

Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate lays bare the complex intellectual, theoretical, and political commitments of an ascendant alt-right and its use of culture, history, and identity to build power and win broad public consent. At its heart it is a sober warning about the ways that violence, patriarchy, and white supremacy continue to shape the American political imagination.”
—Daniel Martinez HoSang, coauthor of Producers, Parasites, Patriots: Race and the New Right-Wing Politics of Precarity


Proud Boys and the White Ethnostate

ISBN: 978-080706336-1
Publication Date: 7/16/2019
Size:5.5 x 8.5 Inches (US)
Price:  $24.95
Format: Cloth
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Will Ship On: July 2019
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