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Discourses of Resilience in the US Alt Right

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)271-287
JournalResilience, International Policies, Practices and Discourses
Issue number3
Early online date28 Apr 2019
Accepted/In press13 Nov 2018
E-pub ahead of print28 Apr 2019


King's Authors


The New Right movements known as the American Alt-Right regularly appeal to resilience and resistance. In this research we examine whether and how they include resilience thinking in their discourses. We analyse Alt-Right discourses on indigeneity, frequently enunciated as the survival of race, on social norms, with a focus on gender, as well as on power and democracy to uncover the role played by resilience thinking. It is found that an illiberal ‘reactionary resilience’ is clearly manifest and linked to 1930s as well as newer ideas of identity, nature and politics. It plays an unlikely and important role in coagulating Alt-Right ideas of identity, survival and struggle in particular. Further, resilience as an assumption linked to nature as well as an operational concept, plays key roles in framing the publicly acceptable face of Alt-Right arguments and as a strategic and personal ethos in resisting social and political change.

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