Whitney Phillips (@wphillips49) joined Ana (@anamariecox) to talk about her recent work, The Oxygen of Amplification, which chronicles the battle journalists face to report on extremism without amplifying it. Ana and Whitney began by talking about why the word “troll” is problematic, and why we ought to stop using it: “It collapses that extreme, sort of violent behavior with behavior that is more performative, sort of playful.”
Early in their conversation, Ana and Whitney dove into the central paradox of that battle: that it’s almost impossible to report on extremism without normalizing and spreading it: “You don’t know if light is going to disinfect or if light is going to simply illuminate.”
Another part of that paradox is that for an uninitiated journalist, it is all too easy to get duped into spreading misinformation: “Those stories weren’t just problematic in that they normalized and treated as an equivalent ideology white supremacist leanings and white nationalism, but they also so easily fell into media manipulation traps.”
They also discussed one of the central problems of this reporting and reporting in general: newsrooms are overwhelmingly white, male, Christian, cis, and able-bodied. Because those people are the ones least at risk from white supremacists, they’re (*shocker*) who white supremacists will talk to, and the most likely to downplay threats from white supremacy. After touching on Unite The Right 2.0, Ana played assignment editor and suggested different directions to take a Nazi Next Door™story.
You can find Whitney’s book here.
Get in touch with us on Twitter at @crooked_friends, or email the show at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Rebecca Traister joins Ana to recap the 2018 midterm elections, and the work that led up to them. Their conversation touches on the demographic of White women and their voting patterns, the history of why White women continually vote conservative, and the changes that were made this election to reach out to other marginalized and often disenfranchised communities.
Ana Marie Cox speaks with journalist Eli Saslow and Derek Black about Derek Black’s transformation from white nationalist to antiracist activist. They discuss current news, what Trump means for the rise of white nationalism in everyday life, and mistakes made by the media and within American culture that contributed to the normalization of white supremacy.
On this week’s two part episode, Ana Marie Cox interviews Karamo Brown and Parker Molloy. Karamo and Ana discuss Karamo's work on Queer Eye, mental health, and what it means to be different in today’s society. Parker and Ana talk about the recent memo about legal status of Trans people released by the Trump administration, what identity means to them, and what the term identity politics has come to mean.
Heather Havrilesky joins Ana to talk about her new book, her career, and politics. They discuss what 2016 meant to them both personally and politically, how feminism has changed in the era of Trump and the MeToo Movement, and their hopes for the 2018 midterm elections.
Ana sits down with Disability Rights Activist Alice Wong to discuss what ableism looks like today, how being disabled is perceived, and the responses from the disabled activist community. They also cover how the modern political landscape affects people who are disabled, and what Trump and Kavanaugh mean for healthcare decisions.