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Alt-Right Transgressions in the Age of Trump

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The alt-right movement dates from 2008 when white supremacist Richard Spencer invented the term to identify contemporary right-wing and far-right socio/political movements. The movement relies on mass media, communicating graphically and symbolically through “trolls,” “tropes,” and “memes.” The “Sadomasochist trope” valorizes aggressive actors like Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin, while demonizing “passive” individuals like Hillary Clinton and Barak Obama. Trolls communicate through memes, single-frame or short video phrases matched with photos and cartoons, to attract online audiences. When not attacking liberals and progressives, alt-right memes turn on traditional conservatives. The alt-right community maintains it is “under assault” in today’s politically correct, overly secularized, culturally diverse society. However, Donald Trump elevated alt-right icon and former Breitbart CEO Stephen Bannon to chief advisor, providing the alt-right movement access to the highest government levels. Will alt-right organizations continue their recent expansion, or will the public lose interest in the movement?

Affiliations: 1: National University tpollard@nu.edu

10.1163/15691497-12341467
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1. Bell Gabriel 2017"“Pepe the Frog, mascot of the alt-right, dead at 12.”" Salon.com http://www.salon.com/2017/05/08/pepe-the-frog-meme-racist-creator-dead/
2. Conner David Michael 2016"“How Out Magazine’s Milo Yiannopoulos Missed the Whole Story and Betrayed Readers,”" Huffpost http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-michael-conner/how-out-magazines-milo-yi_b_12163692.html
3. Dawkins Richard 1976 The Selfish Gene London Oxford University Press
4. Green Joshua 2017"“The World through Breitbart-Vision.”" The New York Times July 16 SR3
5. Herrman John 2017"“Counter Offensive.”" The New York Times Magazine July 2 MM11
6. Hess Amanda 2016"“For the Alt-Right, the Message is in the Punctuation,”" The New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/11/arts/for-the-alt-right-the-message-is-in-the-punctuation.html
7. Joemygod.com 2016"“Sarah Palin Attacks #NeverTrump Traitors For Helping Hillary ‘Snuff Liberty’s Life Out Of We The People’.”" http://www.joemygod.com/2016/07/05/sarah-palin-attacks-nevertrump-traitors-helping-hillary-clinton-snuff-libertys-life-people/
8. Knowyourmeme.com 2017"“Pepe the Frog.”" http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/pepe-the-frog
9. McClennen Sophia 2017"“Forget Fake News: Alt-Right Memes Could do More Damage to Democracy.”" Salon.com http://www.salon.com/2017/07/08/forget-fake-news-alt-right-memes-could-do-more-damage-to-democracy/
10. Merriam-Webster Dictionary 2017"“Meme.”" https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/meme
11. Michael George 2016"“History of the Alt-Right: The Movement isn’t just Breitbart and White Supremacists, its Far Worse.”" Salon.com http://www.salon.com/2016/11/24/history-of-the-alt-right-the-movement-is-not-just-breitbart-and-white-nationalists-it-is-worse_partner/
12. Nagle Angela 2017 Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4Chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right Zero Books
13. Notopoulos Katie, Broderick Ryan 2017"“Alt-Right Terms and Memes.”" Buzfeed News https://www.buzzfeed.com/katienotopoulos/a-normal-persons-guide-to-how-far-right-trolls-talk-to-each?utm_term=.ddd8o5da9#.uxE3WM5pV
14. Oxford Dictionary 2017"“Transgression.”" https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/transgression
15. Reddit.com 2017
16. Roose Kevin 2017"“How a CNN Investigation Set Off an Internet Meme War.”" The New York Times https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/05/business/how-a-cnn-investigation-set-off-an-internet-meme-war.html
17. Seltzer Leon F. 2012"“Dominance or Submissive? Paradox of Power in Sexual Relations.”" Psychology Today https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/evolution-the-self/201206/dominant-or-submissive-paradox-power-in-sexual-relations
18. Southern Poverty Law Center 2017"“Alternative Right.”" https://www.splcenter.org/
19. Submission 2017"“The Beginners Guide to Dominance and Submission.”" altsubmission.com http://altsubmission.com/beginner.html
20. Wall Mike 2017"“New Conspiracy Theory: Children Kidnapped for Mars Slave Colony.”" Space.com https://www.space.com/37366-mars-slave-colony-alex-jones.html
21. Wilson Jason 2017"“Hiding in plain sight: how the ‘alt-right’ is weaponizing irony to spread fascism.”" The Guardian https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/may/23/alt-right-online-humor-as-a-weapon-facism
22. Yiannopoulos Milo 2015"“‘Cuckservative’ is a Gloriously Effective Insult that Should not be Slurred, Demonized, or Ridicule.”" Breitbart.com http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/07/28/cuckservative-is-a-gloriously-effective-insult-that-should-not-be-slurred-demonised-or-ridiculed/
23. Zeiger 2017"“Meme War: New Daily Stormer-Styled News Site Emerges in France,”" The Daily Stormer March 15
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2018-02-13
2018-09-24

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