Far-Right Contestation in Australia: Soldiers of Odin and True Blue Crew

  • Pamela NilanEmail author


This chapter critically considers two contrasting far-right groups in Australia: Soldiers of Odin and True Blue Crew. Both are stridently anti-Muslim. True Blue Crew members organise protests, incite racial intolerance and try hard to attract press coverage. Soldiers of Odin practice street vigilantism while dispersing food to the inner city homeless. Differences aside, both groups amplify claims of border incursion, immigrant crime waves, Islamist terror plots and domestic security weakness, all issues that have long generated political capital in Australia. Both groups recruit members and supporters primarily from disenchanted ‘anglo’ men. The exotic Norse mythology of Soldiers of Odin constitutes the main distinction between them, which means they target their online rhetoric differently to attract far-right supporters willing to take public action.


  1. 9NEWS. (2016, August 28). Right-Wing Groups Clash at Melbourne Anti-Islam Rally. Retrieved June 20, 2017, from
  2. Abdel-Fattah, R. (2017). Islamophobia and Everyday Multiculturalism in Australia. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  3. ABS. (2017). 2024.0. Census of Population and Housing: Australia Revealed, 2016. Australian Bureau of Statistics. Retrieved September 28, 2017, from
  4. Akbarzadeh, S. (2016). The Muslim Question in Australia: Islamophobia and Muslim Alienation. Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs, 36(3), 323–333.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Bessant, J., Farthing, R., & Watts, R. (2017). The Precarious Generation: A Political Economy of Young People. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bouma, G. (2016). Quest for Inclusion: Australia and Islamophobia. In D. Pratt & R. Woodlock (Eds.), Fear of Muslims? International Perspectives on Islamophobia (pp. 67–78). Dordrecht: Springer.Google Scholar
  7. Bourdieu, P. (1984). Distinction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  8. Bourdieu, P. (1990). The Logic of Practice. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  9. Bourdieu, P. (1998). Outline of a Theory of Practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  10. Bourdieu, P. (2000). Pascalian Meditations. Stanford: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  11. Bourdieu, P., & Eagleton, T. (1992). Doxa and Common Life. New Left Review, 191, 111–121.Google Scholar
  12. Bourdieu, P., & Passeron, J.-C. (1990). Reproduction in Education, Society and Culture. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  13. Bourdieu, P., & Wacquant, L. (1992). An Introduction to Reflexive Sociology. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
  14. Castle, T., & Parsons, T. (2017). Vigilante or Viking? Contesting the Mediated Constructions of Soldiers of Odin Norge. Crime Media Culture. Scholar
  15. Collins, J., & Reid, C. (2009). Minority Youth, Crime, Conflict, and Belonging in Australia. International Migration and Integration, 10(4), 377–391.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Connell, R. W. (1991). Live Fast and Die Young. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Sociology, 27(2), 141–171.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Connell, R. W. (1995). Masculinities. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  18. Dean, G., Bell, P., & Vakhitova, Z. (2016). Right-Wing Extremism in Australia: The Rise of the New Radical Right. Journal of Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism, 11(2), 121–142.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Densley, J. (2013). How Gangs Work. London: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Dunn, K., Klocker, N., & Salabay, T. (2007). Contemporary Racism and Islamophobia in Australia. Ethnicities, 7(4), 564–589.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Ekman, M. (2018). Anti-refugee Mobilization in Social Media: The Case of Soldiers of Odin. Social Media & Society. Scholar
  22. Fairclough, N. (2010). Critical Discourse Analysis. London: Longman.Google Scholar
  23. Forrest, J., Johnston, R., Siciliano, F., Manley, D., & Jones, K. (2017). Are Australia’s Suburbs Swamped by Asians and Muslims? Countering Political Claims with Data. Australian Geographer, 48(4), 457–472.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Fozdar, F., Spittles, B., & Hartley, L. K. (2014). Australia Day, Flags on Cars and Australian Nationalism. Journal of Sociology, 51(2), 317–336.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Fry, D. (2016). Kāfir Pride: An Examination of the Recent Apparent Rise in Australian Anti-Islamic Activity and the Challenges It Presents for National Security. Journal for Deradicalization, 6, 105–131.Google Scholar
  26. Gaiman, N. (2017). Norse Mythology. New York: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  27. Gardell, M. (2003). Gods of the Blood: The Pagan Revival and White Separatism. Durham: Duke University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Hagedorn, J. (2003). Gang. In M. Kimmel & A. M. Aronson (Eds.), Encyclopedia of Masculinities (pp. 329–331). New York: Sage.Google Scholar
  29. Hopkins, P. (2016). Gendering Islamophobia, Racism and White Supremacy: Gendered Violence Against Those Who Look Muslim. Dialogues in Human Geography, 6(2), 186–189.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hovdkinn, E. (2016). The Myths of Norse Mythology. Religion Going Public. Retrieved May 12, 2017, from
  31. Hubcap. (2016). Soldiers of Odin Chapters Have Been Started in 42 States. MMO Champion. Retrieved July 15, 2017, from
  32. Huntington, S. (1996). The Clash of Civilizations and the Remaking of World Order. New York: Simon & Schuster.Google Scholar
  33. Hussein, S. (2017). Halal Chops and Fascist Cupcakes: On Diversity and the Weaponisation of Food. Meanjin, 76(1), 124–129.Google Scholar
  34. Jenkins, R. (2000). Disenchantment, Enchantment and Re-enchantment: Max Weber at the Millennium. Max Weber Studies, 1(1), 11–32.Google Scholar
  35. Jiang, Y., Gorn, G., Galli, M., & Chattopadhyay, A. (2016). Does Your Company have the Right Logo. Journal of Consumer Research, 42(5), 709–726.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Kabir, N. A. (2005). Muslims in Australia: Immigration, Race Relations and Cultural History. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  37. Karner, C. (2005). National Doxa, Crises and Ideological Contestation in Contemporary Austria. Nationalism and Ethnic Politics, 11(2), 221–263.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Kelly, A. (2017). The Alt-right: Reactionary Rehabilitation for White Masculinity. Soundings, 66, 68–78.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Kimmel, M. (2007). Racism as Adolescent Male Rite of Passage: Ex-Nazis in Scandinavia. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 36(2), 202–218.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Klein, N. (1999). No Logo. New York: Picador.Google Scholar
  41. Koch, A. (2017). The New Crusaders: Contemporary Extreme Right Symbolism and Rhetoric. Perspectives on Terrorism, 11(5), 13–24.Google Scholar
  42. Koziol, M. (2018, August 14). Senator Honours White Australia Policy in First Speech and Calls for ‘Final Solution’ on Immigration. The Age. Retrieved August 28, 2018, from
  43. Lamoureux, M. (2016, April 18). Europe’s Notorious Anti-immigration Group, Is Beginning to Form Cells in Canada. VICE. Retrieved January 18, 2018, from
  44. Lauchs, M., Bain, A., & Bell, P. (2017). Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.Google Scholar
  45. Laughland-Booÿ, J., Skrbiš, Z., & Tranter, B. (2017). Narratives of Nationhood: Young Australians’ Concepts of Nation and Their Attitudes Towards ‘Boat People’. Journal of Sociology, 53(2), 367–381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Messerschmidt, J. (1993). Masculinities and Crime. New York: Rowan & Littlefield.Google Scholar
  47. Messerschmidt, M. (2018). Ingrained Practices: Sexual Violence, Hypermasculinity, and Re-mobilisation for Violent Conflict. Global Society, 32(4), 477–495.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Miller, C. (2017). Australia’s Anti-Islam Right in Their Own Words. Australian Journal of Political Science, 52(3), 383–401.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Mishra, P. (2018, August 30). The Religion of Whiteness Becomes a Suicide Cult. New York Times. Retrieved August 31, 2018, from
  50. Müller, J.-W. (2016). What Is Populism? Philadelphia, PA: University of Pennsylvania Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Nizamoglu, C., & Yassir-Deane, S. (2015). A Tale of Two Civilisations: The Viking and the Muslim Civilisation. Muslim Heritage. Retrieved December 5, 2018, from
  52. Pariser, E. (2011). The Filter Bubble: What the Internet Is Hiding from You. London: Viking.Google Scholar
  53. Pollard, J. (2016). Skinhead Culture: The Ideologies, Mythologies, Religions and Conspiracy Theories of Racist Skinheads. Patterns of Prejudice, 50(4–5), 398–419.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Poynting, S., & Briskman, L. (2018). Islamophobia in Australia: From Far-Right Deplorables to Respectable Liberals. Social Science, 7(11), 213–230.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Roose, J. (2018, November 25). Are Men’s Movements a New Form of Terrorism? ABC News. Retrieved November 26, 2018, from
  56. Standing, G. (2011). The Precariat. London: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
  57. Tufail, W., & Poynting, S. (2016). Muslim and Dangerous: ‘Grooming’ and the Politics of Racialization. In D. Pratt & R. Woodlock (Eds.), Fear of Muslims? International Perspectives on Islamophobia (pp. 79–92). Cham, Switzerland: Springer.Google Scholar
  58. Vedelago, C., & Houston, C. (2016, October 10). Vigilante-Style Group Soldiers of Odin Patrolling Melbourne CBD. The Age. Retrieved June 17, 2017, from
  59. Veilleux, Y. & Archambault, E. (2017). Soldiers of Odin: The Global Diffusion of Vigilante Movements. Political Studies Association Annual Conference. Strathclyde University, Glasgow, April 11. Retrieved December 5, 2018, from
  60. Weber, M. (1946). Essays in Sociology. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  61. Weinberg, L. (2013). Violence by the Far Right: The American Experience. In M. Taylor, D. Holbrook, & P. M. Currie (Eds.), Extreme Right Wing Political Violence and Terrorism (pp. 15–30). New York: Bloomsbury.Google Scholar
  62. Winlow, S., Hall, S., & Treadwell, J. (2017). The Rise of the Right: English Nationalism and the Transformation of Working Class Politics. Bristol: Policy Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The University of NewcastleNewcastleAustralia

Personalised recommendations