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Sarah Manavis (New Statesman): How architecture-themed Twitter accounts became a magnet for white nationalism

Another account floating around in the architectural Twitter orbit is Wrath of Gnon. A self-described traditionalist, it is the account that was posting quotes from Leon Krier, Roger Scruton, and Theodore Dalrymple liked by ArchitectureRevival. These were posted alongside standard architecture tweets. Although the account functions as a yet another architecture Twitter account, those it follows include famed alt-righter Richard Spencer as well as a handful of accounts self-identifying as alt-right and posting Pepe the Frog memes.

Senior editor at CityLab, the Atlantic’s publication on urbanism, Amanda Kolson Hurley posted on Twitter that, although Gnon’s tweets on architecture can be unproblematic, the account is part of the same alt-right camp as ArchitecturalRevival.

Of course, you may be thinking, white nationalism on Twitter is rife in small, largely unknown alt-right accounts. But these architecture Twitterers are by no means small fry. Wrath of Gnon boasts over 28.8K followers and ArchitecturalRevival has accrued 32.8K. European Beauty, although not strictly an architecture account, is just shy of 40K. These accounts are not toiling in obscurity, but are leading voices in an ever-growing Twitter fandom.

Is 13th century urbanism the new gateway drug into Neo-Nazism??

 
• Category: Humor • Tags: Architecture, SJWs 
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  1. In Rome, I once asked for directions to the nearest post office. I was told to go down the street for about half a kilometre and go around the the corner of the fascist building. While the building was indeed impressively fascist, the post office seemed to be run by communists in terms of efficiency.

    Is 13th century urbanism the new gateway drug into Neo-Nazism??

    That, or probability distributions:

    https://quillette.com/2018/09/07/academic-activists-send-a-published-paper-down-the-memory-hole/

    Someday our descendants will marvel at the exquisite irony of progressives succeeding where fundamentalists failed: banning the teaching of evolution through selection.

    • Replies: @Reg Cæsar
  2. The war on beauty continues.

  3. Isn’t it about time The Unz Review had an architecture critic ? The Wrath of Gnon would be an interesting addition.

  4. notanon says:

    everything beautiful must be destroyed
    - signed, the media

  5. DFH says:

    The other side is into ironic-not-ironic Brutalist Appreciation

    • Replies: @Silva
  6. Dmitry says:

    There’s maybe some connection between people who say “everything new is bad, in the past was better”, and extreme political propagandists.

    This is also with Marxism. Marx theorizes an original state of happiness and harmony, before division of labour, alienation, etc (and history is presented as a long arc of social and psychological decline, before final redemption once there is a sufficient surplus of value). This is kind of “extreme conservativism” is included in Marx, as a mechanism by which he was able attack contemporary society, and hack peoples’ brains, even with a futurist messianic orientation.

    In reality, we all know past epochs were far worse than now, in almost every single way (you cannot romanticize any life before penicillin, for example). Life was completely shit for vast majority of people until recently.

    Any contemporary political movement based in idealism of past epochs, and saying present epoch is terrible (when most people are much better than ever before) is a childish delusion at this history stage..

    But in aesthetic realms, past often really is better. Novels were far better in the 19th century. So was classical music. And the architecture in epochs like 19th and 18th century, was a lot more stylish than today.

    Although with a trade-off, that 100 years ago the vast majority of people could not afford to buy any of this stylish architecture for themselves – but this connected to the overall shit life of people in past epochs. And e.g. Rome was not for tourists appreciating the beauty when people were walking around with bubonic plague.

  7. Silva says:
    @DFH

    I rather think most of the other side doesn’t even express appreciation for *buildings* these days. That said:

    (Is it a problem that I like both architectures? I just dislike importing people from huts and slums.)

    • Replies: @El Dato
  8. Brabantian says: • Website

    Speaking of Pepe … … at the confirmation hearing of Trump’s USA Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh, his former law clerk sat behind him, Ms Zina Bash – who is half Latina, half Jewish. And Zina at least THRICE gave the Euro-heritage-identity gestures, the OK hand signs & the Pepe the Frog hand-on-chin pose

    • Replies: @El Dato
  9. El Dato says:
    @Brabantian

    That was discussed some time ago in the context of Doctor Eugene Gu go all panicky about this on Twitter instead of looking after his patient and that shop on the top left is really bad.

  10. AaronB says:
    @Dmitry

    that 100 years ago the vast majority of people could not afford to buy any of this stylish architecture for themselves

    Um, everyone back then was living in what we call “traditional” architecture.

    That “stylish” 18th century farmhouse that only the rich can afford today was standard back then.

    A measure of what we’ve lost.

  11. Yevardian says:

    Don’t know anything about this, but on glance it seems like typical Jewish false-flagging to me.

    And Theodore Dalrymple is a great writer. He might have been the first to open me to the fact that not all right-wing thought was neoliberal/ancap/neocon garbage.

  12. @Dmitry

    Novels were far better in the 19th century.

    They only seem that way because of survivor bias. Writers in the 19th Century not at the level of Balzac, Dickens or Tolstoy published plenty of garbage novels which deservedly dropped out of print.

  13. Cities weren’t car storage facilities.

    The world wasn’t covered in macadam.

    There was no TV.

    You could see the Milky Way at night.

    You people know nothing.

    • Replies: @El Dato
  14. If we ever have a based fashy Kekistan, AquariusAnon should be Minister of Architecture

  15. If we ever have a based fashy Kekistan, AquariusAnon should be Minister of Architecture

    Don’t you mean Minister of Agriculture?

    • Replies: @AquariusAnon
  16. El Dato says:
    @obwandiyag

    There was no TV.

    There is no TV anymore.

    You could see the Milky Way at night.

    I miss that actually.

  17. El Dato says:
    @Silva

    I lolled but what the hell is that?

    • Replies: @Silva
  18. @Hyperborean

    I’ll hire Chinese architects to design all the buildings with Tolyatti as a template.

    • Replies: @Hyperborean
  19. @AquariusAnon

    To think of it, isn’t there something ironic about an city dedicated to an Italian being filled with brutalist architecture?

  20. dfordoom says: • Website
    @Dmitry

    Any contemporary political movement based in idealism of past epochs, and saying present epoch is terrible (when most people are much better than ever before) is a childish delusion at this history stage..

    But in aesthetic realms, past often really is better.

    Nobody is seriously going to argue that we should return, literally, to the 13th century. The Thought Police are not worried about that.

    What does worry the Thought Police is that ordinary people might see these architecture posts and start asking why it wouldn’t be possible for us to have some of the good things of modern life (clean water and sewerage, antibiotics, etc) but combined with some of the good things of the past (a more human scale of life, actual beauty, family life). That is the kind of dangerous wicked radical thinking that must be stamped out.

    What if people start to figure out that ugliness isn’t actually essential? What if people start to figure out that pretty much all the artistic/architectural/literary movements of the pasty century have been a fraud and a scam?

    • Replies: @Dmitry
  21. melanf says:

    Interestingly, this courtyard in St. Petersburg now alt-right?

    Exemplary Bolshevik approach to art

  22. Is 13th century urbanism the new gateway drug into Neo-Nazism??

    Well, designated shitting streets are a proud Aryan tradition.

    As for latrines (the term in use was agiamento, and also cesso that was used only in Tuscany), they began to set a special cabin inside a thick wall only in the age of Davanzati Palace (since 1330). But most common people settled for either the first street cubbyhole they came upon or the elementary device described by Boccaccio: two planks laid on two beams over a part of a narrow street fenced off by two walls; regular cleaning of that latrine was an obligation of the landlord. Did Florence, like some neighbor cities (San Gimignano for instance), have public latrines? There is no documentary evidence of them. But it is known that in 1317 Florentine priors declared an ownerless place where inhabitants customarily eased themselves communal property. By a 1325 by-law it was prohibited to set private latrines over more or less significant streets and squares – a convincing evidence that before they did just that!

    - Pierre Antonetti ‘Everyday Life in Florence in the Times of Dante’

  23. Dmitry says:
    @dfordoom

    /architectural… movements of the past century have been a fraud and a scam?

    They are fraud, but more in terms of overdramatizing their own influence.

    Current architecture around the world just matches what you can build economically, with present technology, materials, and some engineering plans offsetting low skill level of the contemporary construction workers.

    That’s why it’s the same everywhere, whether in China, Japan or Brazil. Regardless of any 20th century architecture movements, the majority buildings constructed now would look the same. The reason is they are determined by current economy, technology and methods – not any deeper aesthetics.

    20th architecture movements are fraud because they overestimate their influence. China, Japan, etc are building the same, without any need of them.

    In fact, aesthetics is a luxury most buildings do not even reach. People do not build square boxes because they believe some weird 20th century aesthetics – they do because it is the cheapest and most convenient shape – it is lower common denominator architecture.

    with some of the good things of the past (a more human scale of life, actual beauty,

    And this is particularly valued now which is why people pay more for, and it is all the favorite of middle and upper classes.

    You can buy specialty beer, handmade clothes and live in a beautiful castle, with all classical art and aesthetics. But it’s expensive to make this kind of life.

    When you see gopnik rednecks in the supermarket buying only industrial food and returning to their ugly square apartment building. This is not because they are aficionados of 20th century aesthetic and architectural movements. It’s because it is mass produced food and mass produced architecture, which made their life affordable (for the first time in the 20th century, poor people were living well, and having a normal, if unaesthetic, lifestyle).

    If you try to give these people actual beautiful environment and human life scale, then it would be expensive and not possible to live so many people at their level. Maybe in some rich countries like in Switzerland it’s affordable – but that’s just another way of saying everyone can live like middle and upper classes.

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