This morning Fjordman sent out the following tweet:
An entire academic Fjordman-industry is now developing. When will Norway produce the first PhD thesis in fjordmanology?
He was referring to an article in På Høyden, the online newspaper of the University of Bergen. I don’t have a formal translation, but using Google, and with additional help from Henrik Ræder Clausen, I was able to piece together the latest news from Modern Multicultural Norway.
A Norwegian professor of “digital culture” named Jill Walker Rettberg has helped midwife a new fellowship that will investigate extremism on the Internet. According to På Høyden:
“22 July forced us to see that there is a lot of extremism on the net,” says Professor Jill Walker Rettberg. Now the Department of Linguistic, Literary and Aesthetic Studies has announced a fellowship that is designated for research on extreme speech on the web.
The new scholarship was added to the Department of Linguistic, Literary and Aesthetic Studies. “There has been little research on extremism on the Internet, at least from a humanist perspective,” says Prof. Walker Rettberg.
Generally speaking, she is positive about the internet:
“The network is global. It’s wonderful if, for instance, one has a very specific disease or a child with special problem — then one can make contact with the few others who are in the same situation. But it is also easier to find other people who have the same and perhaps equally quirky viewpoints as oneself. One talks about a filter bubble or an echo chamber — it means that one only sees those who are similar to oneself,” says Walker Rettberg.
She adds: “Analyses can focus on language, rhetoric, ideology, visual instruments, aesthetics, discourse or social networks… We want to build up expertise in this field. The debate has shown that there are many views — but there is little scientific research.”
Norwegian academics are known to be scrupulously fair and even-handed in their dispassionate scholarly investigations, so we can be certain that the new discipline will take at least a cursory look at left-wing extremists, and maybe even Islamic radicals.
One of bloggers focused on by the media after 22 July was Fjordman. He was mentioned in Anders Behring Breivik’s manifesto, and it has been said that he was Breivik’s mentor. Fjordman is a radical right-wing anti-Islamist. Among others, Marie Simonsen — the political editor of Dagbladet — has charged that he is an extremist who calls for political violence.
Prof. Walker Rettberg adds, “I knew about Fjordman before 22 July, but I had not made a close examination of what he said.”
All that will change as soon as all that petroleum-backed grant money starts flowing into the Department of Aesthetic Studies. A tireless and fully-funded investigator will leave no stone unturned as he, she, or it gets to the bottom of the dangerous xenophobic right-wing extremist phenomenon known as “Fjordman”.
Obviously, the most qualified candidate for the new position is Fjordman himself. After all, who knows more about Fjordmanology than he does? Just think of the research time and effort that would be saved if he were to take up the fellowship!
I think he should apply for the job.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Jill Walker Rettberg talks about the “echo chamber” that all of us right-wing extremists inhabit. And what she says is true enough — I’m certainly preaching to the choir here 99% of the time.
But what would you call the mainstream media, especially in Norway, if not an “echo chamber”? Doesn’t Prof. Walker Rettberg inhabit a “filter bubble” of her own?
After extensive research into the topic of left-wing extremism in the media, I have come to the conclusion that their primary gripe with the Internet is that it has broken their monopoly on the cultural echo chamber. Now all of those “right-wing extremists” and “xenophobes” can establish their own echo chambers, where they are able to send their racist yodels bouncing back and forth across the virtual valleys of the digital uplands.
And the reach of these new filter bubbles is enormous. The echoes resonate across the entire globe, with millions of people on six continents listening in on them.
This must be galling for a tenured professor of digital nonsense, who is only able to be heard by a few thousand like-minded academics because the state delivers dump truck loads of kroner to her department to support all the claptrap and flapdoodle that passes for “research” in the modern Norwegian academy.
Pull out the petrodollars, and all those professors of comparative cultural oppression would be reduced to boning herring in the canneries, as were their foremothers a hundred and fifty years ago.
Let them shovel out the mammon to themselves while they can. Their time is short.
As a wise man named Lao Tzu said more than two millennia ago:
This is not the way of Tao.
Whatever is contrary to Tao will not last long.
Follow Fjordman on Twitter: Fjordman@Fjordman1
The Lao Tzu quote is from Chapter Fifty-Five of The Tao Te Ching.