respond to each question please do not rewrite the question on the final draft.
The Great White Hoax: Donald Trump and the Politics of Race and Class in America (2017)
Wise, Tim. 2017. The Great White Hoax: Donald Trump and the Politics of Race and Class in America.
Northampton, MA: Media Education Foundation.
The Great White Hoax, explores how American political leaders of both parties have been tapping into
white anxiety, stoking white grievance, and scapegoating people of color for decades to divide and conquer
working class voters and shore up political support. The film’s primary focus is Donald Trump’s race-baiting
2016 campaign for the presidency. But it widens its scope to show how Trump’s charged rhetoric about
African Americans, Latinos, and Muslims fits within a longstanding historical pattern, offering a stunning
survey of how racism and racial scapegoating have shaped American politics for centuries.
On August 11, 2017, a two-day protest march and rally began in Charlottesville, Virginia, to protest the
removal of a statue of General Robert E. Lee. The protest was organized and attended by members of
several ultra-right, white nationalist, and neo-Nazi groups, including the famed white supremacist leader
David Duke, a former Grand Wizard of the KKK and a prominent supporter of Donald Trump’s presidential
campaign. According to the news reports featured in the film, what was the stated purpose of the “Unite the
Right” rally? How and/or do you think “white nationalism” differs from “nationalism” on its own? Why do you
think the statement by President Trump that there was an “egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and
violence on many sides” triggered criticism across the political spectrum?
Over the course of the 2016 campaign, a number of prominent Republicans expressed outrage over
Donald Trump’s use of racial scapegoating. Additionally, mainstream media commentators and political
leaders of both parties repeatedly made the claim that Trump’s use of racial scapegoating broke with the
values of the Republican Party and what it means to be a true conservative. What was the “Southern
Strategy”? And how did Richard Nixon use it to garner white votes and win the presidency? How did the
“law-and-order” rhetoric translate into policy under Nixon? What was Ronald Reagan’s campaign slogan
and how does it support Tim Wise’s point about current conservative political strategies?
After the election, most politicians and pundits argued that economic anxiety was the primary reason for
Donald Trump’s upset victory. The idea that “we are losing our country,” and that the country has gotten
worse since the 1950s, was by far the most common belief of Trump voters. The film argues that while
economic issues clearly did play a role in Trump’s victory, racial attitudes also played a central role. How
does the film demonstrate that economic anxiety and race are intertwined? What was the birther
movement? How does this fit with the overall argument about the primary role that racism, and white
anxiety and grievance, played in the 2016 election?
While a majority of white women voted for Donald Trump, the rate was far higher for white men. Tim Wise
argues that while being white has always come with certain expectations, being a white man has especially
come with certain expectations. According to Wise, in what ways does being a white man in America come
with more expectations than simply being white –how does whiteness intersect with gender? What role
should white people play in the fight against racism and white supremacy? What lessons can we learn from