HPIR Faculty Discuss Historical, Social Context of Presidential Election

Nov. 3, 2016

HPIR Faculty Discuss Historical, Social Contect of Presidential Election

History, Politics & International Relations professors John Chappel, Kelly-Kate Pease and Gwyneth Williams participated in the HPIR Election Panel held Nov. 1, with approximately 40 audience members.

"Gender and the Election"
Gwyneth Williams

Williams discussed the rampant misogyny unleashed against Hillary Clinton, arguing that she has been held to a double standard both by her critics on the left and the right. She noted the ways in which Clinton has had to adjust her outward appearance and her rhetoric in order to meet the gendered expectations of the American electorate.

"Joe Six Pack Doesn't Vote Foreign Policy?"
Kelly-Kate Pease, Professor

Pease talked about statistical evidence showing that American voters don’t generally decide voting preferences based on foreign policy. They care primarily about the economy, it seems, and symbolic factors around image. She noted there might be good reasons for people not to care: studies show no significant difference between the foreign policy of Republican vs. Democratic administrations.

"Something Old, Something New: A Historian’s Take on 2016 Election"
John Chappel

Chappel discussed Donald Trump’s place in recent American history. He noted some parallels between Trump’s movement and earlier insurgent movements. He posed the question of how much Trump is really new vs. the extent to which he represents only a more extreme form of ideological and rhetorical trends already in evidence within the Republican party in particular.

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