Angela Nagle - Kill All Normies – Online Culture Wars From 4Chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right
Recent years have seen a revival of the heated culture wars of the 1990s, but this time its battle ground is the internet. On one side the “alt right” ranges from the once obscure neo-reactionary and white separatist movements, to geeky subcultures like 4chan, to more mainstream manifestations such as the Trump-supporting gay libertarian Milo Yiannopolous. On the other side, a culture of struggle sessions and virtue signalling lurks behind a therapeutic language of trigger warnings and safe spaces. The feminist side of the online culture wars has its equally geeky subcultures right through to its mainstream expression. Kill All Normies explores some of the cultural genealogies and past parallels of these styles and subcultures, drawing from transgressive styles of 60s libertinism and conservative movements, to make the case for a rejection of the perpetual cultural turn.
This book has earned Nagle the title “an old leftist’s idea of what a young leftist should be” by her detractors and “one of the brightest lights in a new generation of left writers who have declared independence from intellectual conformity’ by her champions.
This dynamite stick packaged as a short book, analyzes the twin reactions to the liberal-democratic consensus which served till recently as the self-evident normative foundation of our society: alt-right and Political Correctness. Nobody is spared in Nagle’s razor-sharp critical probing: while she brings out the shared presuppositions and hidden complicity of the two reactions, she also clearly demonstrates how these reactions are grounded in the weakness of the liberal-democratic consensus itself. KILL ALL NORMIES provides the much needed cognitive mapping for our predicament – it is a book for ALL those who want to orient ourselves in our crazy times. (Slavoj Zizek)
Paperback, published in 2017, 120 pages.