Authoritarianism alive and well

Still reeling from the Holocaust, Jewish immigrant Theodor Adorno (1950) was one of the first to make a concerted effort to understand receptivity to Fascist ideology. Understanding in this area has developed over the decades but with the rise of the Alt-Right and the sickening scenes in Charlottesville, USA, in August 2017, the importance of tackling worldviews that promulgate prejudice and hatred could not be more critical.

Counter-protester Heather Heyer died at this white supremacist rally when a far right activist ploughed his car into the crowd. Days earlier Patrick Forscher and Nour Kteily (2017) released findings of a survey showing that Alt-Right supporters not only have high levels of Right Wing Authoritarianism and Social Dominance Orientation they also have high levels of Machiavellianism, Narcissism and Psychopathy, known as the ‘Dark Triad’.

RWA and SDO result when specific personality profiles are exposed to certain world views through parents, peers and the media. RWA results when the world is believed to be a dangerous and threatening place while SDO results from believing the world is a competitive jungle requiring a ruthless attitudes towards those seen as inferior.

What ideas do you have about how to help people to develop alternative  worldviews? How might this contribute to more peaceful and productive unions between differing social groups?

Rest in Peace Heather

heather heyer.jpg


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