Since our founding in 2010, we at ToM have swerved out of the strictly historiographical lane into the political one like Anthony Weiner forever furtively glancing at this phone. Like the Great Weiner, we can’t help ourselves.
Some of our writers are Gen Xers, some are millennials; others are just unclassifiably disgusting. (Looking at you, Clem.) But whether we grew up in the age of Reagan or Clinton, we’ve all seen the same trends. The reality TV-ization of politics that has reached its apotheosis in Donald Trump, the feckless wars and recurrent recessions, and a general loss of faith in the system across the board, whether it takes the form of 9/11 conspiracy theories or a concerted challenge to the status quo from a Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein, or Gary Johnson. Our perspective as writers and scholars is inevitably shaped by the tumultuous nature of American life in the last 20 or 30 years.
You can check out everything we’ve posted about politics and elections, but there’s a lot more that falls under the broad rubric of the political, as anyone who’s been to grad school knows. This last week and a half, we have been inviting historians and political scientists to meditate on the long-term significance of Donald Trump’s candidacy, which seemed as dead as a dodo when the series started and now is apparently far less of a foregone conclusion than we had thought. (Don’t worry, kids – we’re still confident that HRC will win one for the Gipper, right off the stiff red cuff!) Here’s the series: Is Trump Sui Generis?
And you can revisit our election-eve assessment of 2012, for a bit of perspective. We were asking a lot of the same questions (voter suppression? GOTV? changing demographics?) then that we are now: What Will Be Revealed Today?
There is also a wealth of other great political writing at ToM. For instance, RR’s many pieces on Trump, Reagan, and Nixon:
- Nixonian Trump?: The Similarities and Differences between The Donald and Tricky Dick
- Reagan’s 1966 Gubernatorial Campaign Turns 50: California, Conservatism, and Donald Trump
- Reagan Country in the Era of Donald Trump
ASC’s early and apt takedown of the myth of Lil’ Marco’s political acumen:
Cherie Braden’s indomitable explainer on the mysteries of the Electoral College:
J-Wow’s 2016 field report from a Texas Trump rally:
Bobby Baker’s prescient June piece on Trump’s unwillingness to concede:
Keith Orejel’s uncommonly insightful take on the phenomenon of Rick “Santorum” Santorum:
Clement Lime’s rip-roaring campaign coverage:
- Conventional Wisdom: Surviving the Political Theatre of Conventions
- A Fool Such as Biden: Point Break, Wayward Teeth, and Man Love in the 2012 Vice Presidential Debate
- Long Island Ice Tea: Immigration, Gender, and the 2012 Presidential Debate
- Alinsky, ACORN, Sex, and Death at the Quicken Arena
- The Orange Menace and the Angry Snowman: A Cautionary Tale
- If Your Debate Lasts for More than Four Hours, Please Contact Your Doctor
- VP Debate 2016: Send in the Clowns
- And finally, the third and worst-ever presidential debate… Let’s Get Ready for This Nightmare
ToM’s 2015 Guide to Recognizing Your GOP Candidates
And many great pieces about protest and activism:
- Adam Gallagher, Colin Kapernick’s Critics Only Care About Symbolism and Ignore Substance
- Troy Andreas Araiza Kokinis, Kaepernick’s Protest Gesture and the Militarization of American Sports
- ASC, The Triumph of the TA: Graduate Students and the Future of Postindustrial Labor
- Jael Vizcarra and Troy Andreas Araiza Kokinis, Anti-Mexican Graffiti at UC San Diego: Towards a Structural Analysis and Solution
- Jael Vizcarra and Troy Andreas Araiza Kokinis, Freeway Takeovers: The Reemergence of the Collective through Urban Disruption
- ASC, Raging Grannies Battle for the Soul of the New South
- Lauren MacIvor Thompson, “A singularly intricate situation has developed in Washington”: Some Historical Background on Hobby Lobby
- Jeffrey Lawrence, “The Spanish Roots of the 99%”