This fair, funny and sobering analysis of books written about the Trump era calls for a day of reckoning
An intellectual history devoted to a dimwit who once struggled to read aloud an extract from the American constitution, stumbling over big words that sounded, he groused, “like a foreign language”, as if the founding fathers spoke the lingo of undocumented aliens? A chronicle of a so-called era that has lasted less than four noisy, nerve-racking years and with luck is about to end? A book that solemnly analyses 150 often trashy books about someone who is not known to have read a single book and hired stooges to write the 20 self-puffing volumes published in his name? Yes, Carlos Lozada’s survey of what he archly calls “Trump Studies” is all of those paradoxical things and it is an utter marvel: sober though frequently very funny, fairer minded than the subject deserves, in the end profoundly troubling even as it looks ahead to America’s recovery from the Trump malaise.
Lozada, a book reviewer for the Washington Post, approaches his binge-reading chore as an exercise in cultural criticism. Trump may be thoughtless but he is also unthinkable: no one could have anticipated such an affront to institutional precedent, legal restraint, civic decorum and human decency. Some of the writers discussed by Lozada therefore seek the ogre’s origins in the abyss that gave birth to Prospero’s Caliban, Frankenstein’s monster and Batman’s Joker. For one sociologist, Trump emerges from a “deep story” – AKA a myth – about the festering grudges of the white working class in the disaffected American heartland; another traumatised commentator describes him as “the confirmation of all past fears, like a recurring childhood nightmare”. Seen this way, Trump is archetypally coughed up from our psychic sludge. Imagine King Kong with a strawberry-blond comb-over or, according to the eyewitness testimony of Stormy Daniels, an abominable snowman whose penis, like a dwarfish toadstool, nestles among “yeti pubes”.
Compounding lies or replacing them with more outrageous whoppers, he follows the logic of reality shows or soap operas
Donald Trump | The Guardian
1. Trump from Michael_Novakhov (197 sites)