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Antisemitism & Misogyny: Overlap and Interplay

3 minute read. - 26 09 21

Anti-feminism and misogyny can act as slip roads towards antisemitism and other forms of racism. In recent years, the far right in particular has become increasingly adept at steering the former prejudices towards the latter.

That’s the finding of an important new joint report from HOPE not hate and Antisemitism Policy Trust which explores the overlap and interplay between antisemitism and misogyny in a series of articles, case studies and social media analysis.

Other key findings include:

  • Conspiracy theories can provide a link between the two prejudices, in particular the “Cultural Marxism” and “White Genocide” ideologies.
  • Women play important roles in many antisemitic movements as recruiters and propagandists, with several of the UK’s most important Holocaust deniers being women, although they can also quickly become targets for abuse themselves.
  • Through analysing misogyny and gender politics on the messaging app Telegram, a key online hub for the antisemitic far right, we found that open misogyny is widespread and enabled within antisemitic spaces on the platform.
  • Pro-rape comments are not uncommon among the antisemitic far right, and on the extreme fringes a culture has taken root that actively promotes sexual violence as a political weapon. 

The report investigates the ways in which anti-feminism and misogyny can act as slip roads towards antisemitism and other forms of racism, due to a perceived loss of status among white men – and women – based on gender and racial hierarchies. In recent years, the antisemitic far right, in particular, has become increasingly adept at steering antipathy to feminism and women more broadly towards Jew-hatred, reasserting men’s status at the expense of others. 

It also outlines the role of conspiracy theories in bridging anti-feminism and antisemitism, in particular the “Cultural Marxism” and “White Genocide” ideologies that implicitly or explicitly position Jews as the root of feminism and women’s behaviour in general. Such theories can provide a grand context for personal frustrations and prejudices, as well as scapegoats. 

We explore the ways in which Jewish people are gendered in antisemitic discourse, outlining longstanding stereotypes of Jewish men and particularly Jewish women who, being on the receiving end of both antisemitism and misogyny, are the targets of especially vile abuse. 

We also look into the important, but precarious, role of women in antisemitic movements as recruiters and propagandists, including several of the UK’s best-known Holocaust deniers. Women can play a conscious role in “softening” extreme prejudice, although they can also quickly become targets for abuse themselves. 

This report also includes an analysis of misogyny and gender politics on the messaging app Telegram, a key online hub for the antisemitic far right. We found that open misogyny is widespread and enabled within antisemitic spaces on the platform. Attacks on gay men are especially commonplace, which itself indicates the heterosexual male dominance of these spaces. Sexual assault is a prominent theme, and whilst it is discussed in a variety of ways, pro-rape comments are not uncommon. 

Read the full report

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