What is it about?

What we are witnessing in these contemporary times isn’t just the interplay of a racialized-populist sentiment in the political sphere through the amassing of political influence (political parties, campaigns, and policies). What we are also witnessing is the increasing performance of racialized populist political sentiments in the very physical, and public spaces of society. There is a complexity to the contestation of meanings and values ascribed to public spaces.

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Why is it important?

The aim of this manuscript is to discuss this performance within the United States at four historical junctures of animation of leisure space and White Nationalist activity in public and private-public spaces: 1) 1925 Ku Klux Klan March; 2) the 1939 German-American Bund Rally; 3) the 1977 National Socialist Party of America Rally; and, 4) the 2017 Unite the Right Rally.


The political act of protesting is highlighted in its violation of the sanctum of these public and private-public spaces within the theoretical lenses of the White Genocide Conspiracy Theory or the Great Replacement Theory. Each of the four historical cases highlight the impact of this growing White populism, and serves as a cautionary tale for appeals of counter activities and expressions of resistance with the animation, through protest and dissent, of public and private-public spaces.

Rasul Mowatt
North Carolina State University

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This page is a summary of: A People’s History of Leisure Studies: Where the White Nationalists Are, Leisure Studies, June 2019, Taylor & Francis, DOI: 10.1080/02614367.2019.1624809.
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