American Culture Studies Ph.D. Dissertations


Never the Twain Shall Meet?: Arab and Muslim Immigration and Far-right Reactions to Race, Nation, and Culture

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


American Culture Studies

First Advisor

Radhika Gajjala (Advisor)

Second Advisor

Samuel McAbee, Ph.D (Other)

Third Advisor

Yanqin Lu (Committee Member)

Fourth Advisor

Timothy Messer-Kruse (Committee Member)


This dissertation analyzes how far-right digitally networked German and American Islamophobic communities on Twitter frame, discuss, and imagine Arab and Muslim communities as supposedly destabilizing the Western-nation state as a racially homogenous national cultural community. Employing a feminist grounded theory methodology this dissertation involves scraping the comparative hashtags #Islamization and #Islamisierung, visualizing digitally networked Islamophobic communities, identifying user-types, analyzing discursive themes, and tracking information transmission to examine the way in which Islamophobic digital discourse is not merely Transatlantic but increasingly transnationalized among American, German, Indian, and Nigerian digital networks. In charting the contours of these Islamophobic digitally networked communities and the content of their conversations, this dissertation tracks the way in which German and American far-right Twitter users increasingly articulate a series of paranoid linkages between Muslim, Jewish, and Black communities alongside political progressives, multi-lateral institutions, and national governments as united in seeking to destabilize an imagined white or ethnic German, Christian, hetero-patriarchal nation-state and the broader cultural imaginary of the West. This dissertation contributes to contemporary studies of far-right digitally networked communities and finds that even as far-right German and American Islamophobic networked communities are mired within racially exclusionary nationalist rhetoric they are increasingly linked to the growth of transnational and multi-racial far-right networks that span the Global North and South.