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How to Tackle the Extreme Right: American, British, and German Perspectives

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Timothy J. Schmalz.

This past summer stirring images of torch-wielding white supremacists taking to the streets of Charlottesville, Virginia went around the world – and sparked animated debate regarding the most efficacious response to the far right. Due to the prominence of the Antifa, a movement with German roots, among counter-protestors in Charlottesville and to Germany’s reputation as a country with an extremist past that has long done what it can to prevent extreme-right resurgence, the comparison with Germany came to be prominent in that discourse.

At a time when, despite the passing of the Charlottesville tumult, anxieties over the increasing assertiveness of the far right remain high, this workshop will examine in greater depth some of the questions evoked by last summer’s debate: Which strategies are deployed in the United States – and, for that matter, in Great Britain – to tackle far-right movements and to respond when such groups lay claim to the public sphere? What precisely distinguishes German responses? And are German methods transferrable to an Anglo-American context?

Leading us in this discussion will be guest speakers from the United Kingdom and Germany, whose backgrounds are both in the academic study of and in the practical engagement with the extreme right. Following the speakers’ presentations, there will be a panel discussion, in which we warmly encourage the audience to participate.

Speakers include Anna-Lena Herkenhoff (Bundesverband für Mobile Beratung), Ira Katznelson (Cambridge), Craig McCann, and Rebecca Pates (Leipzig)


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