National populism and gendered vigilantism: The case of the Soldiers of Odin in Finland

Sarai B. Aharoni, Élise Féron

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Based on a discursive analysis of various media reports published in 2015–2018 by and about the Finnish right-wing street patrolling organization Soldiers of Odin (SOO), we explore the gendered dimension of contemporary vigilantism. We find that street patrolling as a practice of vigilantism, is justified in this case by using representations of the cityspace as a place of friction between locals and newcomers and of the street as a locus for enacting gendered and racial/ethnic identities. Our findings suggest that SOO’s vigilant practices exhibit a mixture of traditional and new features of masculinity. We argue that the activities of anti-immigration groups such as the SOO in Finland demonstrate a feminist security dilemma concerning the way securitization of public gender-based violence is used to enhance militarized performance of white masculinity. We identify four recurring themes that are used by group members to portray themselves as part of a legitimate social movement: protective masculinity, militarized masculinity, supplement of the state, and indigenous masculinity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-106
Number of pages21
JournalCooperation and Conflict
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Finland
  • gender-based violence
  • populism
  • vigilantism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development
  • Social Sciences (all)
  • Political Science and International Relations


Dive into the research topics of 'National populism and gendered vigilantism: The case of the Soldiers of Odin in Finland'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this