Wedge issues like book bans appear when fascists have no plan to govern and just want to direct white rage at public institutions like schools to erode support for the public good.
Predictably, they generally focus that white rage onto Jewish or Black people as a way of sharpening whatever aspect of whiteness feels to be in crisis (generally as a result of sustained public critique of white supremacy and colonialism.)
Book bans ALWAYS fail. And generally the books sell gazillions more copies, bringing more attention to the object of the white tears. But more than that, book bans and other local cultural wars show us where fascists think they have power to define the limits of the public good.
Book bans make white people feel IN CONTROL, so they can consolidate a narrative among their in-group. But the effect of that is also raising awareness outside of that in-group, so that people mobilize to defend institutions of free speech (like schools and libraries).
Another way of thinking about it: book bans emerge when white people feel so OUT OF CONTROL and WEAK that they must PRODUCE CONTROL over objects that center critiques of power.
Obviously, you should buy and read the banned books and leave them in little free libraries, share them with community members, and support teachers who teach them.

BORROW them from lending institutions to justify their purchase. REQUEST their purchase at your local library.
But understand that book bans work as PROHIBITIONS, which is the only way that fascists see power: as something to be centralized and hoarded, not something to be debated or shared.
Also, fascism works BEST in an ECONOMY OF SCARCITY because people feel social PRECARITY (economic, social, political) and so they don't want to produce ABUNDANCE (of support for public goods).

Invest your TIME and POLITICAL ENERGY into public: schools, libraries, museums, historical societies, parks, etc.

Any scarcity that happens in the US is an intentional political calculation (generally, systematic racism) that helps justify austerity and brutality.
Fascists are counting on you to stay quiet about the erosion and privatization of public goods (LIKE SCHOOLS AND HOSPITALS). So. Don't. Do. That.
Related: book bans are about the convergence of RACE PANIC and SEX PANIC. That nexus is what has mobilized white rage since Brown v. Board (unsurprising since all of white America's racial guilt/shame get played out in the realm of PUBLIC EDUCATION).
The white tears over the 1619 Project and Maus reveal that white supremacists perceives THEMSELVES in CRISIS (over social control, historical meaning-making).
The only way out of that crisis is the destruction of non-white knowledge bases (public education, publishing, etc.).
When white people (hetero men, esp.) feel like they are in crisis, they SEE NO PLACE FOR THEIR WHITE SUPREMACY IN THE PRESENT OR FUTURE so they resort to 1.) NOSTALGIA to REPRODUCE older forms of white identity/history and 2.) terrorism to REGAIN CONTROL.
This is b/c KNOWLEDGE CAN NEVER BE TAKEN AWAY. So if fascists can prevent knowledge (of fascism/racism/colonialism) from being shared (or distort it, via Fox News and conservative media ecology), they can control politics. This is why public ed will always be central to FREEDOM.
Also, public ed & libraries were FEMINIZED b/c of the way that the workforce managed sex/gender in the 1960s. So, if you care about fascism in the US and you are a (cishet)dude invested in FREEDOM, you need to work alongside librarians & teachers to safeguard public institutions.
Book bans are a failure every single time. (People will continue to read Beloved.) But they **demonstrate the limited political repertoire of fascism**. Which means that they also show us HOW PREDICTABLE fascism is and how fascism can be thwarted.
That is, a book ban is not about *the ban itself*. It's about the process of **activating the fascist in-group** to coup at the school board meeting and reassert control over education and over white fascists who might be flirting with liberal thinking/reading/speaking.
Book bans also teach people to snitch on one another to destroy solidarity and community trust.
Snitching undermines public trust in PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS and create an atmosphere of FEAR which creates an illusion of scarcity through profiling and reprobation.
Flood tiplines. With nonsense. BS. Actual complaints about white supremacy.
I see this is going a bit viral. I direct the Gender Studies Program at the University of Arkansas. If you'd like to support our students' work here in the South, consider doing so through endowment giving. Every bit helps:…

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More from @DrLisaCorrigan

Jan 21
"Biden was Supposed to be FDR"
"Biden was Supposed to be JFK"
"Biden was Supposed to be the Pope"
"Biden was Supposed to be Jesus"

National headlines, basically
Democratic presidents face this stuff, not just b/c their coalitions are partial, but also b/c there is a conservative impulse in the legacy media to want them to fail.

They can't accuse Uncle Joe of being foreign-born, so they offer a tyranny of too-high expectations.
This is also a logical consequence of news coverage that focuses on personal narrative/personality instead of structural history/analysis. Democrats get tarred & feathered b/c they want nuance *instead* of sound bites. It would be better to have BOTH.
Read 4 tweets
Jan 14, 2021
At some point we need to talk about emotional and social dysregulation as a feature of the MAGA crowd.

You can be pissed that they exist but there are a LOT of them and they are in your families and sit in your church pews and process your paychecks and work in your schools.
In the 60s, communication scholars shied away from studying social movements because they freaked about: Black activists, women, queers people, and labor folks making emotional appeals
They also bought into a bunch of (mostly pop) psychology about how social movements created groupthink and cults of personality.
Read 13 tweets
Jan 14, 2021
Get in girls. We're going hunting.
Also, this is a whole MOOD.
Quarantine hobby, anyone?
Read 7 tweets
Nov 11, 2020
Also: when liberals/lefties produce fantasies about a potential coup, they are participating in REALIZING A COUP.

That's why professors of rhetoric CAUTION against that kind of SPECULATION. It makes the possibility more likely because people see it as a legitimate outcome.
People want to Be Prepared. I get it. But it's been 4 years. Read some Siskind, FFS. These are not new shenanigans.

But the power is in the FANTASIZING about a MORE destabilized federal government and that's EXACTLY what's going down with the QAnoners and the Parler fascists.
Cool, calm, collected is how you manage the outrage machine. You don't doing by freaking out the anxious libs. You do it by calmly asserting power.
Read 5 tweets
Nov 11, 2020
Combatting the misinformation of Trump Administration (even in the transition) has to be focused on:

1.) repeating the facts (Biden won, Biden won with the most votes ever, Biden won the EC, there is no legal standing for the frivolous lawsuits, etc.)
2.) reasserting organizational norms about the secretaries of state and election commissioners across the US and their deep investment in fair elections
3.) shoring up support for US marshals to remove Trump from the White House, if they need to
Read 6 tweets
Nov 10, 2020
The time to talk about coup things was BEFORE THE ELECTION.

The election is over. Biden won decisively. We rep strength now only.
Read 6 tweets

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