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Incels: who they are and how they think the members of this collective

Incels: who they are and how they think the members of this collective

July 18, 2024

There are many ways of seeing the world and numerous associations and social movements with different purposes and ideologies. However, not all of them are positive and prosocial.

There are movements and even subcultures that defend the commission of various crimes or that consider part of the population as their enemy. This is what happens with the incels, a group that has claimed its first fatalities and about which until recently there was little information.

  • Related article: "Types of sexism: the different forms of discrimination"

The "incels": origin and evolution of the term

The term "incel" comes from "involuntary celibacy" or involuntary celibacy . Initially, it was generated by a woman from the LGTB collective who wanted to refer to all those people who, due to their physical appearance, are not sexually attractive and do not manage to have sexual relations, trying to generate a label to group and generate a community that would integrate and allow them to feel less alone to those people who could not get out of their solitude.


However, with the passage of time the term and its definition have been taken and appropriated by a community or subculture born and expanded through networks (being 4chan or Reddit some of the main ones).

Thus, at present it would be identified as such to that group of men, mostly heterosexuals , that they are not in a relationship or have had sexual relations either never or in a long time (they do not necessarily have to be virgins) in spite of pretending it. These people consider that they have the right to maintain relationships (confusing the right to have sex with the fact that others must provide it), and blame women for denying them that right.


Characteristics of this misogynist collective

Current members of this collective they usually have a misogynistic attitude which has led some of its members to consider that they have the right to punish, force or even kill those who deny or usurp this right. You can recognize a macho and misogynist attitude that sees women in general as a mere sexual object or as a subordinate that has the duty to provide sex.

The collective of the incels tends to consider that their lack of relationships derives from an unattractive physical aspect or a supposed feminine superficiality , not observing their beliefs and attitudes as a motivator of rejection. They do not usually understand the possible reasons for rejection or how other subjects are accepted, and consider that it is an act of discrimination that deserves contempt and punishment. The attitude toward themselves is usually to a greater or lesser degree self-deprecating, highlighting the presence of feelings of displacement and inadequacy that generates great frustration.


Likewise, they are characterized by communicating in Internet forums, spaces where they share their opinions and talk about diverse topics among which the vision of sex as a male right that is being denied to them (reaching human rights movements and even propose the advocacy of laws), as well as the vision of themselves as someone who has been humiliated and is suffering a conspiracy against him.

  • Related article: "Misogyny: 9 attitudes that portray misogynists"

Terms and jargon used in their forums

The hatred of this group is not directed exclusively towards women , but it has also been observed that physically attractive and sexually active men are also visualized as enemies or rivals. In fact, even nicknames or nicknames have been generated to refer to their hate objects.

By "Chad" would be understood all that physically attractive male and active sex life that represents what many of these subjects would want to achieve and can not, and that are seen as their opposites. Some incels revere them, but in other cases there is often a deep hatred and envy towards them. In some forums there has been talk of Chads genocide .

Another one of the nicknames that this subculture puts to other people is the one that they grant to the feminine counterpart of the previous case: the "Stacy". In this case, it would be physically attractive and generally young women who are often attracted to the "Chads" and reject members of the Incel collective. It is an object of hated desire, because they consider that they deny love and sex to those who believe they have a right.

In addition to it they also use the term "femoid", or feminine humanoid . It refers in a clearly pejorative and dehumanized way to those women who only have sex with the Chads, practically, as if it were their only function.

Finally, another pejorative term they use is that of "roastie" (roast beef), which refers to the supposed form that they believe they adopt the genitals of promiscuous women.

Psychological aspects linked

While there is no official profile, making a more psychological reading of the incel ideology the researcher Debbie Ging believes that it is possible to observe those who are part of this group the presence of a high level of frustration, loneliness and a sense of belonging , of being ignored and feeling isolated. A frustration that makes responsible their objects of desire and those who maintain relationships with them.

The presence of a low level of tolerance and little capacity to manage the sexual and / or sexual rejection is also observed, not having enough social skills and emotional management. It's about people who tend to focus on the perception of pain and frustration to finish by blaming the other of him. The lack of powerful affective ties and personal insecurity also facilitates the attachment to this type of ideology, by providing those who make a sense of their lack of relationships.

Murders associated with this collective

The expansion of this group has already claimed its first victims. One of the most famous cases is that of Elliot Rodger , that in 2014 shot and killed six people and injured another thirteen before committing suicide, having left recordings and documents in which he explained wanting to punish women for having felt rejected and dissatisfied all his life and defending that they deserved to die.

This first known case was idealized by some members of the incel collective, to the point that it would be replicated this same April 23 of this year by Alek Minassian. And is that the mass abuse occurred in Toronto last month and that culminated in the death of a dozen people was caused by the aforementioned young man. After that, he left a message on Facebook expressing the desire to start a revolution and exterminate the Chads and Stacys.

These two are cases in which it has been observed the involvement of this group in murders and massacres directly, but other lesser known cases could also be related.

Bibliographic references:

  • Donnelly, D .; Burgess, E .; Anderson, S .; Davis, R. & Dillard, J. (2001). Involuntary Celibacy: A life course analysis. The Journal of Sex Research, 38 (2), 159-169.
  • Rengel, C. (2018). The incel, the misogynists who kill because they can not have sex. The Huffpost.

Flat Earth: A Measured Response (July 2024).


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