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An Oasis of Horror in an Internet of Boredom | Angela Nagle
Chan culture became what you might call the unwanted gift, a twist on Mauss’s The Gift that early Internet theorists used as a central metaphor for the non-instrumental culture of sharing that it nurtured. In The Revolution of Everyday Life by the Situationist thinker Raoul Vaneigem, Mauss’s principle of the gift, originally used to describe reciprocal gift-giving systems in pre-modern societies, was celebrated on the grounds that only the purity of motiveless destruction or ruinous generosity can transcend instrumentalism. The Situationists’ critique of “the poverty of every day life,” like Baudelaire’s “An oasis of horror in a desert of boredom,” articulated a common sentiment—found from the Romantics through to contemporary online cultures of transgression—that ennui, boredom, and inertia requires a counterforce of extreme transgression. But while the Situationists had a better world in their hearts, the nihilistic application of the transgressive style already took shape in the sixties counterculture. “The Manson murders,” Reynolds and Press argue in their book The Sex Revolts, “were the logical culmination of throwing off the shackles of conscience and consciousness, the grim flowering of the id’s voodoo energies.”
theory  politics  philosophy  transgression 
2 days ago by juliusbeezer
The New Man of 4chan | Angela Nagle
On men’s rights sites and in some geeky subcultures, “beta male” is a common term of identification, one of both belonging and self-mockery. It has become a popular meme on 4chan’s recreationally obnoxious /b/ board, a precursor to /r9k/ that produced hacker collectives such as Anonymous while also incubating scores of anti-feminist online attacks in recent years. Know Your Meme records the earliest use of the term “beta uprising” in 2011, on the men’s rights movement blog Fight for Justice. From around 2013, the beta-male uprising was a regular topic among 4chan users...
In response to the attacks, Sierra closed down her blog and withdrew from speaking engagements and public life. In the time since the attack, weev has since become famous for hacking a phone company—a maneuver that triggered a Twitter-based #freeweev campaign, which gained support from prominent progressive endorsers such as Laurie Penny and Gabriella Coleman. Embarrassingly for those who expressed the view, fashionable in the heyday of the Occupy movement, that 4chan/b/ is a “counter-hegemonic space” and that trolls in the 4chan/b/ vein are, as Coleman argued, inheritors of the Dadaist and Situationist traditions, weev is a fascist sympathizer with a swastika tattoo on his chest. Penny claimed to be unaware of his far-right views, while Coleman not only continues to defend his rights as a hacker, but also presents him as an endearingly impish figure in her latest book.
politics  racism  theory  feminism  internet  transgression 
2 days ago by juliusbeezer

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