One of the major themes in the readings this week was the influence of institutions on the promotion of anti-gender campaigns and ideology, as well as how the analysis of anti-gender movements could be more nuanced.
I found the Żuk and Żuk article to be very well written, as the way that it methodically broke down the logical fallacies present in a lot of right wing discourse is a useful way to structure and address our own anti-fascist and anti-populist arguments. Appeals to emotion are very useful on both sides of the argument, but recognition of why these arguments are poor ones to make can be very useful in cutting through strong emotional responses, especially when dealing with emotional topics as abortion and LGBTQIA issues.
In a different vein, I appreciated the Patternotte and Kuhar article especially, as I think the emphasis on looking at different ways that anti-gender movements operate allows for a more nuanced approach on how to solve these particular issues. I do still think there is some connection often between countries, as we have seen from previous weeks’ readings that there is a transnational element to these movements. One example would be a comparison of the new-Marxism present in especially CEE countries, versus the “cultural-Marxism” based in the United States.
What I thought might have been interesting for Patternotte and Kuhar to look at would be the media’s presence in all of this. Britain especially is known for its wide variety of tabloids, and the framing that media does when it addresses issues like gender would have added to the conversation.
On a bit of a side note, trans-exclusionary radical feminists are an interesting intersection of all of this, as they often perceive themselves to be protectors of women and feminists but are surprised when many of the things they talk about receive positive attention from right-wing populists. Patternote and Kuhar highlight that the anti-gender conversation is not just about right-wing populists but left-wing as well. To further see this kind of dynamic, there’s an interesting article on La Manif Pour Tous’s founder Emile Duport who states that he does not see his work as left or right wing, or Catholic, but rather “This is a humanitarian topic. It is like ecology for us. We try to give [it] a higher meaning.” He now works as part of an anti-abortion organization supported in part by the Catholic Church.