The Trump Syllabus: Duck Input Needed!

24 March 2017, 0714 EDT

Even though ISA provided some much-needed group therapy, in the end we still need to grapple with and teach about #45. I was inspired by some ideas in syllabi 1, 2, and 3, but I also needed some background information and topics that are geared towards a non-American audience. On top of it, I left the theme of one session open for the students to decide on.

So below is roughly what my students are  in for at the University of Bremen.  Any ideas how to improve it?

Unit 1: Sources


Finley, M. (1962). Athenian Demagogues. Past & Present, (21), 3-24.

Further reading: The Federalist Papers, 9, 10;

Alexis de Tocqueville, Democracy in America, Vol. 1, Book 1, chap. 5 (1835).


Kasser, T., & Ryan, R. M. (1996). Further examining the American dream: Differential correlates of intrinsic and extrinsic goals. Personality and social psychology bulletin, 22(3), 280-287.

Manza, J., & Brooks, C. (2014) Prisoners of the American Dream? Americans’ Attitudes toward Taxes and Inequality in the New Gilded Age

Further reading: Davis, M. (1986). Prisoners of the American dream: Politics and economy in the history of the US working class. Verso.


Mudde, C. (2004). The populist zeitgeist. Government and opposition, 39(4), 542-563

Canovan, M. (1999). Trust the people! Populism and the two faces of democracy. Political studies, 47(1), 2-16.

Further reading: Dornbusch, R., & Edwards, S. (1991). The macroeconomics of populism. In The macroeconomics of populism in Latin America (pp. 7-13). University of Chicago Press.


Doty, R. M., Peterson, B. E., & Winter, D. G. (1991). Threat and authoritarianism in the United States, 1978–1987. Journal of personality and social psychology, 61(4), 629.

Lipset, S. M. (1955). The radical right: A problem for American democracy. The British Journal of Sociology, 6(2), 176-209.

Further reading: Adorno, T. W., Frenkel-Brunswik, E., Levinson, D. J., & Sanford, R. N. (1950). The authoritarian personality.


Unit 2: Parts


Lakoff, George (2016) Understanding Trump.

Kazin, M. (1998). The populist persuasion: An American history. Cornell University Press.

Further reading:  

 Fairclough, N. (2000). New Labour, new language?. Psychology Press.

All the King’s Men (2006) film


Azari, J. R. (2016). “How the News Media Helped to Nominate Trump.” Political Communication 33(4): 677-680.

Baumgartner, J. C. and J. S. Morris (2016). The Serious Business of Late-Night Political Humor: Foreign Policy Issue Salience in the 2014 Midterm Elections. Communication and Midterm Elections, Springer: 131-142.

Further Reading:

Buckels, E. E., et al. (2014). “Trolls just want to have fun.” Personality and individual Differences 67: 97-102.

Del Vicario, M., et al. (2015). “Echo chambers in the age of misinformation.” arXiv preprint arXiv:1509.00189.


Caldwell, Wilber W..; American Narcissism: The Myth of National Superiority (Introduction and Chapter 3)

Christopher Lasch (1979). The Culture of Narcissism: American Life in an Age of Diminishing Expectations

Further reading: Leo Braudy (1986) The Frenzy of Renown: Fame and Its History.

Optional: Businessman as a hero. Warren Buffet, Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism

Unit 3: Themes


Ducat, Stephen (2016) The Wimp Factor: Gender Gaps, Holy Wars, and the Politics of Anxious Masculinity (Chapter 6)

Yuval-Davis, N. (1997). Women, citizenship and difference. Feminist review, 4-27.

Further reading: Sjoberg, L., & Gentry, C. E. (2007). Mothers, Monsters, Whores: women’s violence in global politics. Zed Books.

Sperling, V. (2015). Sex, Politics, and Putin: Political Legitimacy in Russia. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

  1. RACE (thanks to Myron T. Strong for suggestions)

Rosino, M. L., & Hughey, M. W. (2016). Who’s invited to the (political) party: race and party politics in the USA. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 39(3), 325-332.

Golash-Boza, T. M. (2015). Race & racisms: A critical approach.

Further Reading: Fanon, F. (2008) [1952]. Black skin, white masks. Grove press.

David Jacobs and Daniel Tope (2008) Race, crime, and Republican strength: Minority politics in post civil rights era.  Social Science Research, vol 37,issue 4,p 1116-1129


Richard Hofstadter (1966) The Paranoid Style in American Politics. Vintage

Michael Barkun (2003) Culture of Conspiracy: Apocalyptic Visions in Contemporary America (Chapter 1&2)

Further reading: Eric Oliver, Thomas Wood (2014) Conspiracy Theories and the Paranoid Style(s) of Mass Opinion


Geoffrey Kabaservice (2011) Rule and Ruin: The Downfall of Moderation and the Destruction of the Republican Party, From Eisenhower to the Tea Party

Brown, J. A. (2016). Running on Fear: Immigration, Race and Crime Framings in Contemporary GOP Presidential Debate Discourse. Critical Criminology, 24(3), 315-331.

Further reading: Ann Coulter (2016) In Trump we trust. E Pluribus Awesome OR Adios America


Fensterwald Jr, B. (1958). The anatomy of American” isolationism” and expansionism. Part I. Journal of Conflict Resolution, 2(2), 111-139.

Braumoeller, B. F. (2010). The Myth of American Isolationism. Foreign Policy Analysis, 6(4), 349-371.

Further reading: Jonas, M. (1966). Isolationism in America, 1935-1941. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.

  1. TBA!