“Do You Own a PS4”: Interpreting Youth Involvement in a Far-Right Group

Saturday, 21 July 2018: 09:00
Oral Presentation
Sébastien PARKER, University of Toronto, Canada
This paper highlights the diverse ways young people come to join and stay in a far-right group. Through ethnographic fieldwork and semi-structured interviews with members of CasaPound Italia, an Italian far-right group constituted in the early 2000s, and its youth organization, Blocco Studentesco, it is argued that young people are attracted to the group’s style of activism but choose to stay because of the sense of community and the relationships created from within the organization. Particular attention will be given to members who first joined the youth group and eventually joined CasaPound Italia. Interviews reveal that young members, more so than the older members, did not join by pursuing a specific political objective (Blee 2002; Pilkington 2016). Further, the findings reveal that young members’ trajectories should be interpreted as a process: specifically, one which involves continued interactions between youth who are receptive to varying degrees because of (1) outcomes stemming from social life, (2) efforts from the organization to recruit members, and (3) conducive social contexts.