Enough Already! A Socialist Feminist Response to the Re-emergence of Right Wing Populism and Fascism in Media

Series:

This text explores the re-assertion of right-wing populist and fascist ideologies as presented and distributed in the media. In particular, attacks on immigrants, women, minorities, and LGBTQI people are increasing, inspired by the election of politicians who openly support authoritarian discourse and scapegoating. More troubling is how this discourse is inscribed into laws and policies.

Despite the urgency of the situation, the Left has been unable to effectively respond to these events, from liberals insisting on hands-off free speech policies, including covering "both sides of the issue" to socialists who utilize a tunnel vision focus on economic issues at the expense of women and minorities. In order to effectively resist right-wing movements of this magnitude, a socialist/Marxist feminist analysis is necessary for understanding how racism, sexism, and homophobia are conduits for capitalism, not just ‘identity issues.’

Topics addressed in this text include an overview of dialectical materialist feminism and its relevance and a review of characteristics of authoritarian populism and fascism. Additionally, the insistence on a colorblind conceptualization of the working class is critiqued, with its detrimental effects on moving resistance and activism forward. This was a key weakness with the Bernie Sanders campaign, which is discussed. Online environments and their alt-right discourse/function are used as an example of the ineffectiveness of e-libertarianism, which has prioritized hands-off administration, allowing right-wing discourse to overcome many online spaces. Other topics include the emergence of the fetal personhood construct in response to abortion rights, and the rejection of science and expertise.

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Faith Agostinone-Wilson, Ed.D. (1998), Oklahoma State University, is Professor of Education at Aurora University. Her recent publications include Handbook for Undergraduate Research Advisors (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016) and Dialectical Research Methods in the Classical Marxist Tradition (Peter Lang, 2013).
Introduction: An Urgent Situation
 Chapter Overview

Chapter 1: On the Relevance and Necessity of Socialist Feminism
 Introduction
 Feminisms
 Key Issues
 “It Goes without Saying”: Against Brocialism
 Conclusion

Chapter 2: Fascism and Right-Wing Populism: Similarities, Differences, and New Organizational Forms
 Introduction
 Conceptual Overview
 Shared Characteristics of Authoritarian Populism and Fascism
 Differences
 New Forms
 Cautions
 Conclusion

Chapter 3: Who Is the Real Working Class? Moving beyond the Construction of the White Male Industrial Worker as a Marker of Authenticity
 Introduction
 Neoliberalism’s Effects
 Constructing Capitalism through Race and Gender
 Diversity of the Working Class
 Conclusion

Chapter 4: Bernie Breakdown: Challenges Facing the Left in the Wake of the Sanders’ Campaign
 Introduction
 Sanders Campaign: Lessons Learned
 Conclusion

Chapter 5: Well, Actually: Cyber Sexism and Racism within Online Settings and the Enabling Discourse of E-Libertarianism
 Introduction
 E-Libertarianism
 Forms and Functions of Trolling
 Cyber Organizing
 Conclusion

Chapter 6: Abortion through the Lens of Fetal Personhood: Social Meanings and Functions
 Introduction
 Abortion: An Overview
 Fetal Personhood: Ideology & Law
 Oppressive Outcomes of Fetal Personhood
 Conclusion

Chapter 7: In Defense of Science, the Press and Expertise for the Public Good
 Introduction
 Attack on Expertise
 Pseudoscience
 Fake News
 Both-Sides-Ism
 Conspiracy Theories
 Conclusion

 Conclusion: Enough Is Enough

References
Index
Readership includes those interested in critical, Marxist, and feminist analyses of the role of media in the rise of authoritarian populism and fascism, within the context of recent political events.