Jun 28, 2020

Nxivm: the Reinventive Path to Success?"

Saturday, July 11, 3:00 - 3:50 PM

"Nxivm: the Reinventive Path to Success?"(Susan Raine, Stephen Kent)

In this session I discuss the multi-level cultic organization, NXIVM. I propose that NXIVM operated as, what Susie Scott (2011) calls, a reinventive institution—that is, an organization that people enter into voluntarily, because they promise to help people transform or reinvent themselves through personal and professional growth, self-actualization, self-improvement, and success. The group’s founder and leader, Keith Raniere offered members these outcomes via the Stripe Path—a hierarchal system of courses that were supposed to empower people as they worked towards personal growth and world peace. Scott stresses, however, that reinventive institutions incorporate structures of power and are far from benign. This dynamic is evident in NXIVM, which offered to empower its members but ultimately ended up disempowering many of them—especially its most committed female followers. I follow up this discussion by addressing how Raniere had groomed many of these most dedicated women for sexual abuse and exploitation. Grant Sinnamon’s (2017) research on adult grooming and Janja Lalich’s (1997) work on the psychosexual exploitation of women in cults provide extremely useful insights for understanding Raniere’s behaviour.

Register: https://icsahome.networkforgood.com/events/21475-icsa-online-summer-conference

More info: https://www.icsahome.com/events/virtual-summer-conference

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