Does American Fascism Exist?

Source: The New Republic
by Daniel Bessner

“Some insist that the similarities between contemporary American populism and fascism — their shared racism, reliance on the petit bourgeois, hypernationalism, and xenophobia — indicate that fascism, finally, has come to America. Others disagree, maintaining that the enabling structural conditions of classical European fascism — firsthand experience of total war, a powerful left, and a relatively weak state capable of being taken over — no longer exist, and that, whatever right-wing populism is, describing it as ‘fascist’ occludes more than it illuminates. Into this fray enters the intellectual historian Bruce Kuklick, whose Fascism Comes to America provides an entirely new perspective on a debate that’s become a bit exhausting. Unlike other pundits and thinkers, Kuklick is not interested in whether ‘fascism’ as such has arrived in the United States. Rather, he’s concerned with how the term itself has been used in the last century of American discourse.” (03/06/23)