American Sociological Association

The Place of Race in Conservative and Far-right Movements

This paper explores current understandings and proposes new directions for research on the place of race in rightist social movements in the contemporary United States. We examine two broad categories of rightist movements. The first is white-majority conservative movements that deny their participation in racialized politics but in which race is implicit in their ideologies and agendas, such as the Tea Party. The second is far-right movements that explicitly espouse racist ideologies and agendas, such as neo-Nazi groups. For conservative movements, we examine the extent to which racial factors shape agendas and motivate participants. For far-right movements, we examine how they define race and seek to enact their racial goals. We point to productive possibilities for new research on the racial positionality of scholars of social movements, the relationship between rightist movements and larger social trends, and processual and longitudinal aspects of rightist movements.


Kathleen M. Blee and Elizabeth A. Yates





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