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CAS Inquire: “On Melancholia and White Pain”

Casey Ryan Kelly, Professor of Rhetoric & Public Culture, Communications Studies

Date: Time: 5:00 pm–7:00 pm
Nebraska Union Room: Swanson Auditorium
Additional Info: NU
Contact: Taylor Livingston,
This presentation examines the dominant media narrative that President Trump’s electoral victory was a reflection of white working class pain (physical and economic) rather than nativism and xenophobia.

Kelly will explore the racialized and classed schemas we draw from to make sense of and prioritize whose pain matters in U.S. public culture and how psychoanalytical theories of pain and melancholia explain the emergence of rhetorics of white victimhood.

Pre-talk reading:

The science of white working class pain: Trump’s appeal is rooted in the body as well as the mind, Salon

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