“A Supreme Gentleman”: An analysis of the conceptual relationship between incel ideology and violence

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University of New Brunswick


Acts of incel-related violence have increased in prevalence over the past decade, and scholars and security experts have identified these acts as a threat to public safety. This thesis conceptualizes incel-related violence as a form of ideologically-motivated violent extremism, and thus seeks to understand how incels conceptualize violence. In order to accomplish this, I conduct quantitative content analysis of discussions of violence on an incel forum in order to identify statistically significant relationships between violence and a variety of themes and concepts. I then further explore these salient themes through four case studies. Through this process, I identify three major themes in incels’ discussions of violence: misogyny and racism, emotional suffering, and entitlement and weaponized subordination. This research emphasizes the need to explore incel-related violence as a hate-motivated phenomenon and to develop intervention programs aimed at challenging and preventing the spread of incel ideology at individual and community levels.