Discussions of individual white nationalist memes (icons or words that catch on and spread virally) appear in many books and news sources. George Hawley’s book, The Alt-Right: What Everyone Needs to Know has a particularly helpful introduction to white nationalist uses of visual and verbal memes and clear explanations of some of the most influential (pp. 110-18).

We discuss music here, under visual signs, because the music itself, with lyrics frequently unintelligible, is less likely to stand out initially than CD covers, posters, and band logos. Locating good discussions of “white power music” is complex because the term spreads over many genres (country, rock, metal, electronic), and because singers and bands rapidly come and go, articles on the music scene are quickly dated. Because of repeated patterns and strategies in white nationalist music, however, some older sources still provide useful information, such as the Anti-Defamation League’s The Sounds of Hate: The White Power Music Scene in the United States in 2012. Three more recent short articles by Southern Poverty Law Center are:  Fashwave, the Electronic Music of the Alt-Right, is Just More Hateful Subterfuge (2017), Suspect in Church Burnings Influenced by ‘Black Metal’ Music, Police Say, But Not All Black Metal Is the Same (2019), and SPLC, Hate Music (2020).

“Many people remain mystified as to how an innocuous cartoon frog with no ideological content became associated with white nationalism and anti-Semitism.”

“I had some racist views before I started listening to music but once I heard that first Skrewdriver song, I was sold. It really did change my life.”

Many sources discuss the process through which young people are recruited by white nationalists online. Two that focus on individual cases are Luke Munn, Alt-right Pipeline: Individual Journeys to Extremism Online, and Kevin Roose, The Making of a YouTube Radical. Both include descriptions of the experience of Caleb Cain, a former white nationalist vlogger who now posts videos under the name, Faraday Speaks, recounting how white nationalist material online attracted him. Christy Somos, Dismantling the ‘Alt-Right Playbook’: YouTuber Explains How Online Radicalization Works, describes the analysis of online radicalization developed by another YouTube personality, Ian Danskin, who focuses on the dynamics of white nationalist recruitment.

More discussion of sources appears on the White Nationalism Online page.