SPUR TO VIOLENCE?

Anders Behring Breivik and the Eurabia conspiracy

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Abstract

This article analyzes the conspiratorial dimensions of Breivik’s body of thought. The position is defended that conspiracy theorizing is the discursive mechanism by which the ruling political elite is depicted as a hostile conspiratorial actor that betrays the interests of the true people. As conspiracism also contains an operational spur to urgent, extraordinary or violent action in order to rescue civilization from destruction, it is argued that the conspiratorial dimensions of Breiviks body of thought are an important explanation for his choice to attack the governmental seat of Norway and the youth camp of the Labour Party at the island of Utøya. Finally, it is argued that the performative dimensions resulting from the ‘Casting Society’ contains the spur for individuals to expose themselves violently to the world as heroes in front of their imagined communities in order to gain notoriety. A close reading of Breivik’s manifesto seems to confirm these propositions.

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