Manosphere: whether you know the word, you’ve seen the manosphere in action on national news. It's the term for a very real, turgid, frothing (mostly white) male anger that has been organized into powerful online platforms. The Guardian’s Nosheen Iqbal defines the manosphere as “the grim alliance between pick-up artists, men’s rights activists, incels (involuntarily celibate men), the far right and the most ardent Make America Great Again advocates.”
Despite that abject calling card, the manosphere has a frightening role in nationally important incidents, including the Santa Barbara shooter, rape-culture in government office, and White Nationalist, anti-women actions on college campuses. Ranging from teens to the over-50s set, these are the online-networked body politic that bolstered Steve Bannon and fueled GamerGate. They are frightening.
And they’re doing something really weird.
Classicist Dr. Donna Zuckerberg, editor of the Greco-Roman focused online journal Eidolon, noticed high traffic to an article on stoicism and discovered an unexpected obsession with antiquity in the manosphere. Using this lens, she uncovers a culture: why are men with virulent anti-feminist sentiment suddenly quoting Marcus Aurelius? Who are these people? After a two year deep anthropological study involving at least an hour daily’s grotesque research on an online culture where rape is ok and white men feel oppressed, she shares that insight with us at Kepler’s Books.
Join Angie Coiro and Dr. Zuckerberg’s for a This Is Now discussion on Not All Dead White Men: Classics and Misogyny in the Digital Age—because you may not want to visit these sites yourself, but it’s important to know what they’re doing.