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AntifascismThe Course of a Crusade$
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Paul Gottfried

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781501759352

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2022

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501759352.001.0001

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Antifa and the Mainstreaming of Antifascism

Antifa and the Mainstreaming of Antifascism

(p.19) Chapter 1 Antifa and the Mainstreaming of Antifascism

Paul Gottfried

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines the development of Antifa in the United States as both a major political force and a continuing source of civil disturbance. It looks beyond the often simplistic explanation for this development provided by sympathetic media; namely, that in violent protests and rioting we are observing a natural, understandable response to the discovery of systemic racism in the United States. One can condemn the indefensible killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis and also note that Floyd was used as a pretext for mobilizing revolutionary forces to swing into action. The result of what in some cases were planned actions was to leave inner cities devastated. Although some of this violence may have been spontaneous, Antifa and those acting in concert with it had their fingerprints on the devastation. Moreover, their demonstrations prompted similar protests, resulting in looting and the toppling of statues by antifascists in Western Europe.

Keywords:   Antifa, civil disturbance, systemic racism, revolutionary forces, antifascist protests

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