David Rozado has become something of a household name here at the Daily Sceptic, thanks to his pioneering studies on wokeness. You know those charts showing sharp upticks in the usage of terms like ‘sexism’, ‘racism’ and ‘transphobia’? He’s the guy who made them.
Until recently, he’d confined himself to studying the Anglosphere and his native Spain. Rozado has now extended his analysis to dozens of other countries, and what he finds is pretty remarkable: The Great Awokening is a global phenomenon.
In almost every country Rozado looked at, there was increase in the frequency of what he calls “prejudice-denoting terms” beginning around 2012. As the left-hand chart below indicates, this was true even in countries like Kenya and Nigeria – where you’d assume people would be more concerned about things like poverty.
The chart uses a standardised scale, which makes the trend in each country visible while masking average differences across countries. So what do those average differences show? When Rozado plotted them separately for each type of prejudice, the results were quite interesting (see right-hand chart above).
As you’d expect, mentions of ‘Islamophobia’ were most common in Muslim countries, while mentions of ‘anti-semitisim’ were by far the most common in Israel. And mentions of ‘sexism’ (and related terms) were most common in Spain. For the other three types of prejudice, the pattern was less clear, though the UK came close to the top on all three.
Perhaps the most interesting finding to emerge from Rozado’s analysis is that the big increase – the “woke hockey stick”, as I’ve named it – appears to be more or less simultaneous in all countries. This is somewhat surprising. Most of us had been assuming that it occurred first in the US, then in other Western countries, and then (if at all) in the rest of the world.
Among Western countries, the US does appear to be a front-runner on mentions of ‘racism’, as you’d predict, though the margin isn’t huge. (Russia has also seen a big increase, though Rozado believes this mainly reflects commentary mocking the Western media’s preoccupations.)
So did the Great Awokening originate in America, as most of us had been assuming? I believe it did. Though I also believe it was amplified in many countries at the same time through social media.
As to why the phenomenon probably did originate in the US, you have to remember that non-Americans read American media far more than Americans read non-American media. What’s more, many influential journalists and activists in countries outside America go to study at America’s elite colleges, where they imbibe the tenets and language of woke ideology.
So you’ve got many influential journalists and activists all around the world reading American media and regurgitating what they learned at US colleges. Then social media hits. And because that’s where influential people congregate, articles couched in the latest woke jargon frequently go viral, causing less-influential people to adopt the same jargon in their own articles.
Soon everyone in the media of a particular country is using terms like ‘patriarchy’, ‘transphobic’, and ‘people of colour’.
My argument is admittedly somewhat speculative. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be tested. You’d have to go back and see which articles went viral first, and who wrote them. I suspect that English-speaking journalists, especially those who studied in America, would be overrepresented among the authors.