Manage episode 284022804 series 2796573
This episode of #TheNewAbnormal podcast features Dr Jennifer Mercieca, author and Professor at Texas A&M University; an historian of American political rhetoric whose research combines history, political theory / philosophy / science. Her latest research is on how ubiquitous propaganda has ruined our public sphere and what we can do about it. As an author, she writes about American political discourse, especially as it relates to citizenship, democracy, and the presidency, and has published three books: 'Founding Fictions', 'The Rhetoric of Heroic Expectations: Establishing the Obama Presidency', and 'Demagogue for President: the Rhetorical Genius of Donald Trump'. Jennifer has also written for The Conversation, USA Today, Washington Post, and other major media outlets. She's been interviewed by the BBC, NPR, The New York Times, CNN, The Guardian, Vice, ABC Radio, Slate, and many other outlets throughout the US and Worldwide - and has been called “probably the leading authority on Trump’s rhetoric”. So, as you can imagine, this interview features a fascinating discussion about her views, including the use of language as a weapon, how Trump took advantage of distrust, polarisation and frustration, and why the unifying campaign strategies he employed were anything but simple. In their review of her latest book, The Washington Post stated "The question of how Donald Trump ever got elected president has stumped some of the nation’s deeper thinkers. Jennifer Mercieca has a compelling answer. Spoiler alert: Trump is not, in fact, a genius. He’s a sophisticated con man who used the tools of rhetoric to pick the pockets of the American body politic, double-talking his way to power..."