A Festschrift for Chip Berlet

Exposing the Right and Fighting for Democracy:
Celebrating Chip Berlet as Journalist and Scholar

Exposing the Right and Fighting for Democracy: Chip Berlet as Journalist and Scholar, which I co-edited with Pam Chamberlain, Matthew N. Lyons and Abby Scher, has just been released by Routledge. This festschrift—a collection of essays in honor of a scholar, often done at the end of their career—includes an all-star cast of scholars, activists, and of course Chip Berlet’s friends.

Chip has researched, written about, and organized against fascists and the Far Right for four decades, co-founding a think tank dedicated to this, and influencing hundreds, if not thousands, of people along the way.

Although I had already done activism and research on fascists and antisemites, Chip (as he is known to one and all) was the one who encouraged me to get more deeply involved in the work. He solicited from me, and then convinced his think tank, to publish my first major article on this subject in 2008. Later I ended up as a Fellow at that organization.

But more than that, over the intervening years Chip has been a resource and a friend. I’ve asked him for advice many times, and we have done talks together, even co-authoring a journal article. But at the very beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, Chip was forced to retire for health reasons. It is with great sadness that the journal article we did together turned out to be his last, and furthermore two talks I booked for him in March 2020 ended up being his final public appearances.

Although I already had written about the Far Right and have a different approach, Chip is the closest thing to a mentor I have had. And in appreciation for him, I and three others—two others who had worked at the think tank, Abby Scher and Pam Chamberlain, as well as Matthew Lyons, the co-author of Chip’s magnum opus, Right-Wing Populism in America—assembled this festschrift together. Chip has been such a mensch over so many years to so many people that our solicitations received an incredible response. Almost everyone we asked, no matter how famous or busy they were, contributed a piece. Indeed, Chip is one of the only people who can be said to have influenced everyone from the militant antifascist movement to the U.S. Justice Department, and this anthology reflects that. The articles themselves range in length from a paragraph to full-length essays. They include both personal and political stories about Chip, analyses of his work, and essays on the Right which are dedicated to him.

I encourage everyone to buy this book, and I hope you enjoy it as much as I’ve enjoyed working with Chip.

Exposing the Right and Fighting for Democracy: Celebrating Chip Berlet as Journalist and Scholar
Edited By Pam Chamberlain, Matthew N. Lyons, Abby Scher, and Spencer Sunshine

Part I: The Early Years
Part II: Analysis
Part III: Practice
Part IV: Legacy

Part I: The Early Years

1. Chip in the 1960s
Sue Kaiser

2. My Friend Chip
Terre Roche

3. From Way Back When to Now
Grace Mastalli

4. Chip: The “Winni” Years
Mary Eich

5. Our Best Friend
Penny Rosenwasser

6. Awe-Inspiring Moments and Radical Alterations: A Conversation with Chip Berlet
April Rosenblum

7. Ruminations on an Intellectual History of Chip Berlet and the “Right Wing Populism” Formulation
Spencer Sunshine

Part II: Analysis

9. Chip Berlet’s Brave Look at the Far Right’s History and Ourselves
Maresi Starzmann

8. Transnational Right-Wing Populism: Chip Berlet’s Enduring Insights
Jason Wilson

10. Reading Chip Berlet in the Rose City
J. Sciortino

11. Chip Berlet and the Fidelity of the Clerks: A Historical Excursus
Roger Griffin

12. Understanding and Resisting Left-Right Convergence in the Internet Age
Ben Gidley

13. Social Movement Theory and Right-Wing Conspiracism: Hints from Chip Berlet’s Work
Steven Gardiner

14. What I Learned from Interacting with and Reading Chip Berlet: An Appreciation and Thank You
G. William Domhoff

15. Why I’m a Chipite: Lessons from Chip Berlet
Shane Burley

16. Agent and Archive: Chip Berlet and the Historicity of Right-Watchers
A.J. Bauer

17. Donald Trump and the Myth of the Deep State
Michael Barkun

Part III: Practice

18. Our Chip
Angelia R. Wilson

19. In Praise of Chip Berlet: Intrepid and Trustworthy Trail Guide
Kay Whitlock

20. Chip Berlet’s Magic and Militias
Kenneth S. Stern

21. Homage to Chip
Bill Weinberg

22. A Conversation on Chip’s Praxis
Mary N. Taylor and Sophie Bjork-James

23. Righteous Mensch
Holly Sklar

24. The Berlet School of Political Thought
Abby Scher

25. Chip: You Rock My World!
Loretta J. Ross

26. Fighting the Good Fight: No Chip on his Shoulder
Mark Potok

27. Genuine Chip
Mark Pitcavage

28. He Opened the Library to Me
Jennifer Mittelstadt

29. Chip Berlet, Co-author
Matthew N. Lyons

30. Chip’s Intellectual Influence in Exploring African Anti-gay Politics
Kapya Kaoma

31. The Still, Strategic, Organizer Mind of Chip Berlet
Kit Gage

32. Passing the Torch
Alex DiBranco

33. Studies on the Right with Chip Berlet
James P. Danky

34. Desperately Seeking Chip
Pam Chamberlain

Part IV: Legacy

35. Reflections on Reading Chip Berlet
Aaron Winter

36. Chip Berlet and Defending Dissent
Sue Udry

37. Always There in My Corner
Scot Nakagawa

38. A Bridge Called Chip Berlet
Cas Mudde

39. The Generosity of Chip Berlet
Donna Minkowitz

40. A Tribute to Chip
Carol Mason

41. For Chip
Joe Lowndes

42. A Hero
Talia Lavin

43. Chip Berlet was My Foundation
Daryle Lamont Jenkins

44. The Significance of Chip Berlet
Bill Fletcher, Jr.

45. A Bright Light of Scholarship and Reporting in a Darkening Time
Frederick Clarkson

46. Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
Brooke Binkowski

47. Chip Berlet Made Me a Better Researcher and Thinker
Heidi Beirich

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