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Bronze Age Pervert is on the verge of mainstream acceptance

Bronze Age Pervert's previous Twitter avatar/Costin Alamariu's holiday snap. Credit: BAP/Twitter

September 19, 2023 - 10:00am

In a literary transformation as idiosyncratic as it is unexpected, Costin Alamariu, better known to the extremely online world as Bronze Age Pervert, has defied the conventional career path of a public intellectual. Initially emerging from a prestigious philosophy programme at Yale University with middling academic prospects, Alamariu ventured into the realm of anonymous online shitposting before ultimately becoming the author of what at the weekend ranked as the #33 best-selling book on Amazon, Selective Breeding and the Birth of Philosophy. 

The work, which was adapted from his dissertation, explores the relationship between philosophy, nature, and biological reality, challenging the mainstream and accepted norms. This is not a book you’d expect to grace Amazon’s bestseller list.

Alamariu graduated from Yale in 2015 with a Ph.D. in philosophy. There, his dissertation explored the concept of tyranny through the lens of Plato and Nietzsche — an academic journey that appears to have served as a playbook for his future engagement as a provocative online poster. His initial lack of prominence was leavened by occasional contributions to paleoconservative platforms like Taki’s Magazine and the publication of a somewhat convoluted yet entertaining manifesto under the BAP pseudonym. 

Bronze-Age Mindset is a jarring cocktail of classical history, political philosophy, and humorous critique directed against what Alamariu perceives as modern-day mediocrity. Written in a catchy patois, the work built a sizeable following among the extremely online, as well as some in mainstream intellectual Right circles.

However, Alamariu’s recent media exposure, including a long critical profile in The Atlantic, appears to have legitimised him, after a fashion. No longer simply an anonymous online provocateur, he stands on the precipice of mainstream acceptance. With the Overton Window seemingly adjusting in his favour, Bronze Age Pervert might be a persona he can finally relinquish. This raises questions for other anonymous or pseudonymous online figures like Raw Egg Nationalist and Peachy Keenan. Could they, like Alamariu, shed their veils of anonymity and break into broader discourse? The early commercial success of Alamariu’s latest book suggests that the time could be ripe for such a transformation.

My conversations with anonymous figures underline how arduous it is to break through the glass ceiling of online anonymity. While figures like Alamariu have succeeded, many others scrape by on meagre Patreon earnings and an unsteady ascent to recognition, even when they have large followings and considerable amounts of engagement on social media.

As we observe the windfall from this game of “based dissident” musical chairs, it seems certain that only a few will emerge victorious while others languish in obscurity. In the grand sweepstakes of ideas and identity, Alamariu has undeniably hit the jackpot — a gamble that has paid off “bigly”, to borrow from former president Donald Trump. Someone like Alamariu’s friend Zero HP Lovecraft, whose work Alamariu has promoted, will likely never reach such heights — Lovecraft’s championing of ideas such as race realism simply isn’t the sort of thing the public is ready to accept, while Alamariu’s philosophical dressing-up of beautiful, oiled-up warrior-kings with smooth, bare chests has probably arrived at the appropriate cultural moment. 

In an age teetering between anonymity and recognition, Alamariu serves as an instructive case study. His ascendancy to mainstream academic discourse from a veiled online existence underscores the evolving dynamics of intellectual engagement in the digital era. As the boundaries of traditional scholarship and online subcultures continue to blur, the question remains: what will happen to all the lesser anon content creators who got the man formerly known as Bronze Age Pervert to this point? These unfortunates, foundering in the wake of the few who broke through the glass ceiling, are likely to become what’s left of a youth movement grown old. 


Oliver Bateman is a historian and journalist based in Pittsburgh. He blogs, vlogs, and podcasts at his Substack, Oliver Bateman Does the Work

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Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
9 months ago

The problem with making money from this kind media is that you need to constantly distort events around an agenda or exaggerate an enemy to keep hold of followers. It becomes a self-perpetuating solution looking for a problem.
I think we are in a profoundly precarious time in history where the news we consume is beginning to form our opinions and political views, even our personas and identities. We seem to be falling under the sway of, perhaps unintended propaganda devices, aimed not necessarily at division, but keeping us constantly engaged.
When running out of sources or institutions they can trust, people tend to fall back into old ways that did work, hence the rise of religiosity in the West.

Jason Smith
Jason Smith
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

I’m intrigued by your view that religiosity is rising in the west. Apart from a very narrow group of Unherd readers and nationalists, I’ve seen no evidence of this anywhere.

Penny Adrian
Penny Adrian
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

Political religiosity is on the rise. We are a religious species. When we give up one form of religion, we adopt another. It’s slightly more dangerous when a person thinks they are not religious when in fact they are a fanatical ideologue.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
9 months ago
Reply to  Penny Adrian

We’re a spiritual species, which is different from being “religious”, in the sense of a human-derived system of belief. I think it’s incredibly important to distinguish between the two, not least because those of us who aren’t “religious” are often accused of being merely materialistic, which is very mistaken.

Martin Butler
Martin Butler
9 months ago
Reply to  Penny Adrian

We’re all ideologues to a degree. The fanatical ones are just those you disagree with.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

It’s wishful thinking, and almost certainly based on the very same bias-found reading that JF seems to be warning against.
That’s a shame, since he makes some very incisive points around the precarious nature of our times, in the immediate online and post-online eras (i.e. how humans will adapt to being permanently engaged online.)

Last edited 9 months ago by Steve Murray
Julian Farrows
Julian Farrows
9 months ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

I see where you’re coming from. I don’t necessarily mean official religion is on the rise (although I do mean that too), but ‘religious-thinking’ which also includes climate alarmism and transgender gnosticism.
A better example of what I’m alluding to is perhaps the seventeenth century. With the advent of mass-printing, Europe descended into holy wars and witch-burnings. Similar to our times people were consuming information at an unprecedented pace. At that time, the second most popular book printed after the Bible was apparently the Malleus Malefaricum in which the author blamed women for his unholy lusts and subsequently provided methods to unearth witches.
With the internet, groups that normally would have been kept at the fringes of any wholesome society have gained traction in so far as that their views which would have been considered absolutely repugnant a mere twenty or thirty years ago are now entering the mainstream and presented as ‘normal’. One could say that by removing Christianity from the centrality of Western thought we have allowed ourselves to to fall victim to a much nastier and more vicious form of religion. It is almost as though political systems require theological foundations to keep people believing in them.

Last edited 9 months ago by Julian Farrows
Steve Murray
Steve Murray
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Ah, fair enough, and thanks for the further exposition. I’d largely agree with those points, whilst having no time for those who advocate a return to the religious tradition, which served a purpose but which i feel we should now put behind us.

Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

One notes that the Malleus Malefaricum was condemned by Inquisitors, demonstrating the necessity of centralised religious authority and its impotence when confronted by our darkest desires.

michael harris
michael harris
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

The Malleus was written by two Dominican monks (Kramer and Spenger) theologians of the order. It came from what was at that time academia. It set down in the new print the orthodoxy of the days. Hatred and fear of women was not part of official Catholic doctrine and was strongly offset by the Marian cult.
But I did read this many years ago in an apocryphal text, a letter of Paul or Peter (I forget which) to one of the early Christian congregations.
‘Dearly beloved brethren there are two principles at work in the universe. The first is the principle of all that is true and unchanging and of the spirit and this is the masculine principle. The other principle is that of the earth of what changes and decays and this is the feminine principle’.
Oddly there is an echo of this in Shaivite Hinduism where Shiva is both male and female. The male side of Shiva is the structure (so to speak) and lives eternally atop Mount Kailash. But all necessary work in the world, especially the slaying of demons is done by the female side, Durga, and by Kali her alternate.
As a non Hindu I do hope I have this very approximately right. Please correct me if wrong.

David George
David George
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Thanks Julian, a pre-literate society, of necessity, reveres it’s elders, the holders of the culture’s wisdom and knowledge. The current assent of progressivism perhaps a manifestation of the abundance of knowledge and the consequent presumption of wisdom?

Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

Research indicates that the most successful marriages are between two highly religious people, followed by marriages between two very leftwing people. Why the latter are separated from the former is a mystery to me. The obvious religiosity of ‘progressives’ has been noted for at least two centuries.

Peter Johnson
Peter Johnson
9 months ago
Reply to  Albert McGloan

When I was a teenage Catholic I would argue with people about the church. Eventually I grew up a bit and realized I was wasting my breath. I am in the same place with global warming and other accepted wisdoms of the progressive left. Their belief is religious in nature.

Noel Chiappa
Noel Chiappa
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

I’ve classified the climate change believers as a religion for a while now. As other have said, when humans dispose of one religion, we invent another to replace it. Seen any Baal-worshippers recently?

Doug Van Tress
Doug Van Tress
9 months ago
Reply to  Noel Chiappa

Perhaps. Child sacrifice was central to worshipping the Baals. Some parents today happily offer up their children to the genital organ slicers in exchange for likes on Twitter. It’s arguably a religious act of public sacrifice. The virtue of the parent rises, at least within the cult.

starkbreath
starkbreath
9 months ago
Reply to  Doug Van Tress

Depressingly accurate. The trans cult has a lot of parallels with the Jonestown cult of the late ’70s.

Janet G
Janet G
9 months ago
Reply to  Noel Chiappa

Early spring in Australia and already we have mid-summer heat and a complete fire ban, as six bushfires burn already in my area. Perhaps the “climate change believers” have a smidgeon of truth to their “religion”?

Martin Butler
Martin Butler
9 months ago
Reply to  Noel Chiappa

Thought religious was a a good thing. Certainly the climate deniers hardly seem super rational bunch. So sad how the whole green thing as been politicised by both left and right. Green politics is, thought through, an essentially conservative stance.

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

Belief in an afterlife and a creator is an evolved trait in humans. It would have (and may still) confer resilience in times of hardship. It doesn’t make it true of course but it’s a no lose position.

Martin Butler
Martin Butler
9 months ago
Reply to  Jason Smith

The west is not one thing. UK is certainly becoming less religious but that doesn’t mean we’re all fans of Richard Dawkins – it’s complicated!

laurence scaduto
laurence scaduto
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

Good point about how the “news we consume” has become the nearly exclusive source of our veiw of the world, and “even our personas and identities”.
The biggest problem with that is that the news we consume is very malleable. Advocacy groups, using simple public-relations techniques, have managed to convince large segments of the public to believe half-truths and outright lies.
I’m particularly struck by the distorted data being pushed by various climate alarmists. (Just one instance: Some years ago prominent glaciologists reported that the Ross Ice Shelf was in a state of immanent collapse. After the predictable storm of tweets it wound up on all the news sites and created all sorts of follow-on disaster mongering (floods of climate refugees overrunning the West!). What they forgot to mention was that in the field of glaciology “immanent” means 4 or 500 hundred years from now, maybe a thousand. No actual scientists were predicting a looming disaster. Eventually one or two glaciologists spoke up, but by then the horse had already left the barn.)

Last edited 9 months ago by laurence scaduto
Martin Butler
Martin Butler
9 months ago
Reply to  Julian Farrows

It’s called techno-feudalism. Information is simply about money not truth

Catherine Conroy
Catherine Conroy
9 months ago

I’m certainly intrigued. Having read the Atlantic profile and Amazon reviews of the book, I suspect I might not like everything he writes about but considering how for instance speakers on the biological difference between men and women get silenced and harassed under the ‘liberal banner, and how men are forever told that masculinity is toxic (because we’re all feminists now), the Bronze Age Pervert sounds like a breath of fresh air.
Being aware of other people’s views, no matter how disturbing, is the best way to address whether they are valid or simply problematic. The Atlantic calling the BAP alt-right is an unhelpful label.

M Doors
M Doors
9 months ago

This review has certainly piqued my interest.
5.0 out of 5 stars
 Best book
Reviewed in the United States on September 18, 2023
Verified Purchase
Good to read while nightwalking, it can double as a cudgel. I struck an obese harpy cow who had the gall to darken my path. She exploded in a thin mist of SSRIs and tattoo ink. Best book I have ever read.
5 people found this helpful

Simon Blanchard
Simon Blanchard
9 months ago
Reply to  M Doors

I just used an Audible credit on it.

Noel Chiappa
Noel Chiappa
9 months ago

He got written up in the Claremont Review of Books a couple of years back. I’d be more inclined to trust what’s said there of him than many other places.

Tyler Durden
Tyler Durden
9 months ago

Perhaps if I called myself Bronze Age Peterson, I’d have similar success?
Would have appreciated some extracts from his enlightened tome(s) in this piece, as I really don’t have the energy to look them up. Surely he’s made a YouTub video.

Albert McGloan
Albert McGloan
9 months ago
Reply to  Tyler Durden

Consider Interview with Bronze Age Pervert on the Russians With Attitude youtube channel, but tbh if you’re unfamiliar with his twitter very little will make any sense.

Martin Butler
Martin Butler
9 months ago

Thought I might come away from this knowing something about what he actually believes! My millennial son is into Lovecraft & some spiritual stuff. So I’m curious.

Last edited 9 months ago by Martin Butler
Elvis Quinn
Elvis Quinn
9 months ago

So I got around to reading Bronze Age Mindset. I found it drab, claustrophobic and ultimately life-denying. But it did also manage to be annoying and aggravating as well, which I suppose an oafish intellect such as his can pull off.
I suppose his appeal is that he stimulates and grabs attention, and we’re leaning every more into a ‘stimulation culture’, as the brahminhood of Silicon Valley do their upmost best to keep us glued to our device screens.
This is why he’s very “online”, and the reason why his pale, wan star is seemingly on the rise. His output has very little intellectual merit and would’ve largely been disregarded otherwise.

John Tangney
John Tangney
9 months ago
Reply to  Elvis Quinn

It’s relatively easy to stimulate and grab attention if you have no shame, as any number of online influencers demonstrate, but BAP’s appeal is intellectual and iconoclastic at a time when universities are become hotbeds of woke conformity that fail to nourish young men’s appetite for adventure. His work has plenty of intellectual merit, but it’s also got personality, a combination that makes the herd animals among us feel ‘unsafe’. They dismiss him as stupid because stupidity is a synonym for evil in woke vernacular, which, incidentally, is why they have to maintain that racial IQ differences are cultural.

Emre S
Emre S
9 months ago

This kind of misses the main story. Here comes a man who produces a very well thought out, openly and overtly racist literature, and he gets a free pass from the main stream. Minor unintended transgressions by some others are met with high pitched shrieks complaining about racism.
It’s worth reading the Atlantic article and some of BAP’s output to understand what’s going on here btw.
I come to two conclusions on this then. Firslyt, the Trump Derangement Syndrome really is about deplorables aiming for power. It’s not about Trump’s racism or any other fault, it’s about his stupidity and what or who he represents.
Secondly, it looks like elements of American elite have had enough after perhaps a decade of Wokeness, and are getting ready to embrace racism (once again) if it’s done in an intelligent way.

Last edited 9 months ago by Emre S