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Archetypal Populism: The “Intellectual Dark Web” and the “Peterson Paradox”

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Abstract

The Intellectual Dark Web (IDW) is a metaphor coined by mathematician Eric Weinstein to describe a group that opposes “the gated institutional narrative” of mainstream media and the political establishment. Drawing on the discourse-mythological approach (Kelsey in Media and Affective Mythologies: Discourse, Archetypes and Ideology in Contemporary Politics. Palgrave Macmillan, London, 2017), this chapter shows how archetypal populism provides a cohesive narrative for the IDW. The analysis shows that the IDW is politically diverse and has expanded the parameters of intellectual discourse beyond mainstream culture. In conclusion, this chapter suggests that attention to the archetypal conventions of populist narratives can help explain how complex cultural conversations function through cohesive narrative structures. Populism can be destructive, divisive, and regressive, but it can also be necessary, unifying, and progressive. Populism can be reductive and simplistic, but it can also stimulate nuance and complexity. Therefore, ideological context is significant to the judgements we make about archetypal populism.

Keywords

  • Intellectual Dark Web
  • Archetypal populism
  • Monomyth
  • Discourse-mythological approach
  • Carl Jung
  • Jordan Peterson

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-55038-7_7
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Fig. 7.1

(“SJW”—Social Justice Warrior)

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Correspondence to Darren Kelsey .

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Kelsey, D. (2020). Archetypal Populism: The “Intellectual Dark Web” and the “Peterson Paradox”. In: Kranert, M. (eds) Discursive Approaches to Populism Across Disciplines. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-55038-7_7

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-55038-7_7

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  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Macmillan, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-55037-0

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-030-55038-7

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