This presentation situates the rise and fall of the Trump presidency within the polymorphous technologies of truth and fakery associated with reality TV and social media: experimentation, verification, spectacularization, affect and performativity.
Drawing from but also complicating Baudrillard’s late diagnosis of the total telemorphosis of social life, I parse the contradictions of “post-truth” media culture, and show how the staging of governance as a reality show in which we are all compelled to play a part activates new mechanisms for contesting Trump’s presidential performance. Recalling Foucault’s notion of grotesque sovereignty as a manifestation of political power that operates in spite of its discrediting as “odious, despicable, or ridiculous,” I ask what bearing Trump’s declining ratings might have on the structural violence of racism, misogyny and market neoliberalism in the United States today.
Laurie J. Ouellette is a Professor in the Department of Communication and the Department of Cultural Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of Minnesota, United States of America.
|Date||Thursday, 23 November 2017|
|Time||4:15pm - 5:45pm|
|Department||Media, Film and Communication|
|Location||Richardson Building, 6th Floor, North, Room 4 (R6N4)|