American Swastika: Inside the White Power Movement's Hidden Spaces of Hate (Violence Prevention and Policy)
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From Publishers Weekly
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If you want to understand the white power movement in the U.S., you must read American Swastika. Pete Simi and Robert Futrell draw on their own observations and interviews as well as the work of previous researchers to produce a compelling, well-researched, and comprehensive examination of white power activism. They skillfully tackle the difficult issue of explaining why this movement has persisted in one form or another for so long. (Betty A. Dobratz)
Through their revealing and disturbing ethnographic accounts of the activities of white supremacist groups...the authors argue that white supremacist ideas, identity, and pride are cultivated and disseminated through Aryan "free spaces." ....The authors bring their academic knowledge of the white power movement to bear on their ethnographic study. Of interest to students and researchers of hate groups and white supremacist activities in America. (Library Journal)
America's white racists see themselves as an endangered minority, according to this disturbing look at the white supremacist movement. Simi, an associate professor of criminology and criminal justice at the University of Nebraska, teams up with Futrell, an associate professor of sociology at the University of Nevada, to provide a panorama of the white power movement in its different regional and ideological iterations. With insight and clarity, the authors offer a detailed review of supremacist literature, as well as the role the Internet has played in strengthening the movement....The book is indisputably a powerful and unnerving study of how parents indoctrinate their children to hate and fear minorities, and the role that activities as mundane as concerts, house parties and tattooing can play in the conversion of new recruits into these subcultures. Also helpful is the overview of groups ranging from the Ku Klux Klan to racist skinheads, each of whom have their own distinctive beliefs, social codes and agenda. (Publishers Weekly)
Pete Simi, an associate professor of criminal justice at the University of Nebraska at Omaha kept going back, kept trying to get deeper into the mind of the modern American white supremacist. And that's likely why his book, "American Swastika," is such a fascinating read-an unusually lively read, really, considering it's also intended to be an academic look at the subject by an academic. His walk on the wild side not only enriched the sociological insights of the book, but inspired vivid, frightening narratives from his time spent walking with some of this country's most fanatically racist people. (Omaha World-Herald)
This book is an eye-opener in several ways, revealing the every day lives of an important element in the U.S. that has power beyond their numbers. Pete Simi and Robert Futrell's data describe real people with real concerns that are too-often dismissed as the lunatic fringe. (Short, James F., Jr.)
Simi (Univ. of Nebraska, Omaha) and Futrell (UNLV) provide an unprecedented look into communities of white supremacy in the US. Their particular areas of focus are the movement's free spaces, both material and virtual, where white supremacists can safely come together to express their racial views, form hate-centered communities, and recruit new members. Birthday parties, house parties, rock shows, Bible study, Internet groups, and weekend retreats all reveal the startling normality of racial hatred in these communities and make the book compelling for several academic genres. This rich community study explores issues of identity, refuge, inclusion, empowerment, bonding, and division. It also is relevant as a study of a contemporary social movement that seeks survival and change in a world hostile to its beliefs. Further, the book contributes to the study of racial identity and contemporary racism, highlighting the need to continue to examine overt forms of racism in a color-blind society. It is important for its contribution to multiple fields and its compelling readability. Essential. (Choice)
American Swastika takes readers into the 'free spaces' of the white-power movement, where members emerge to speak their minds without fear of retribution. Researched and written by Pete Simi and Robert Futrell...the book takes us into the homes of white-power believers, to their rallies, concerts and to children's birthday parties with swastika-shaped cakes. (Las Vegas Weekly)
Your academic friends will find much to learn about the eye-opening subject of hardcore racism in Pete Simi and Robert Futrell's harrowing American Swastika: Inside the White Power Movement's Hidden Spaces of Hate (Rowman and Littlefield, $19.95). These two young university profs, through first-person accounts and interviews with members of white-supremacy groups, dig deep into the subculture's cracks and crevices, the music and the lifestyle, to tell us what's going on. 'Weapons and race war are consistent topics of crashpad conversation,' they write, a crashpad being a rundown motel or dilapidated apartment around Los Angeles where skinheads gather for days, sometimes weeks, on end. Simi and Futrell don't flinch at anything—the hate-spewing rock bands, the rituals, the Internet propaganda. Swastika isn't preachy; rather, it's a sociological analysis of what happens in those invisible places where hate festers, even at the moment when—and perhaps due to the fact that—a black man resides in the White House. (The Tuscan Weekly)
Simi and Futrell conducted extensive fieldwork and interviews with white power activists and groups between 1996 and 2006. Their impressive data include 89 initial and 94 follow-up interviews, observation in a number of movement spaces and, most unusual, visits to white power activist houses that extended from several days to five weeks. With these rare data, the authors provide an insiders’ look at white power activism....This book needs to be read by anyone interested in white power activism. It is a wellcrafted study of the range of social practices and emotions that sustain racial extremism in today’s America. (Contemporary Sociology)
- Publisher : Rowman & Littlefield Publishers (January 16, 2010)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 176 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1442202084
- ISBN-13 : 978-1442202085
- Item Weight : 15.8 ounces
- Dimensions : 6.37 x 0.67 x 9.48 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,792,221 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Dr. Cynthia Mahaffey
Instructor, First-year Writing and Women's Studies
Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green, OH
Bias, Bias, Bias...
I will likely get my head blown off by writing a negative comment about the book honestly while stating reasons why I feel this way. But Please spear me the comments of calling me racist, xenophobe, chauvinist, self-hater, naczi, megalomaniac. I have heard them all before and I sure you, the only thing you declare by launching virtual verbal assault is declaring your own extreme-left agenda that anyone with the courage to speak their mind, in a rational way, heard a 1000x and then some. Such comments are a form of hate speech against which I take a stand, such as my desiccation to review this book despite of the likely negative outfall.
Top reviews from other countries
It is all good that this book studies many aspects of neo national socialists in America mainly through first-hand interviews. But don’t we smell something of pre-assumed conviction that they are evil just because they are racists?
We can see a little white girl in this book saluting like a national socialist in Germany during the era of the Third Reich. We have to understand first that she is expressing her own thought now and second, expressing one’s whatever thought is recommendable because the freedom of thought is the freedom of the one which we hate.