The Politics of White Rage
DOI link for The Politics of White Rage
The Politics of White Rage book
Chapter 2, “The Politics of White Rage,” explores how Trump’s brand of politics appeals to voters not because of its ideology or policy positions but because of its affective resonances. Specifically, it argues that Trump utilizes an aesthetic of white rage, a rhetorical style animated largely by fears and anxieties about the decentering of White masculinity. This style, we further argue, is evident across his managerial, physical, and linguistic performances. While Twitter offered the president a new modality for communicating white rage, it is crucial to recognize that the aesthetics of white rage are old and deep, rooted in the slave trade, and woven into the nation’s fabric. Understanding the ways that Trump’s rhetoric expresses, particularly on an affective level, this already available racist aesthetic begins to explain why counter-appeals to logic and reason constantly fail to combat it. Engaging this rhetoric at the aesthetic and affective registers will be the only way to undermine its power.