This article shows that the incorporation of right-wing libertarians into the Alt Right coalition was the end result of a schism in the neoliberal intellectual movement in response to the egalitarian challenge of the 1960s. In a symmetry with developments on the post-Marxist Left, one group of Austrian School economists associated with F. A. Hayek took a cultural turn. Performing their own critique of “economism,” they perceived human nature as rooted primarily in culture, adaptable over time through social learning and selective evolution. The other group of Austrian economists, linked to Murray Rothbard and culminating in the racist-libertarian alliance of the Alt Right, saw difference as rooted in biology and race as an immutable hierarchy of group traits and abilities. While many observers have described the Alt Right as a backlash against the excesses of neoliberalism, this shows that an important current of the Alt Right was born within and not against the neoliberal movement.
Anti-’68ers and the Racist-Libertarian Alliance: How a Schism among Austrian School Neoliberals Helped Spawn the Alt Right
Quinn Slobodian; Anti-’68ers and the Racist-Libertarian Alliance: How a Schism among Austrian School Neoliberals Helped Spawn the Alt Right. Cultural Politics 1 November 2019; 15 (3): 372–386. doi: https://doi.org/10.1215/17432197-7725521
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