In the year since the November 2016 election of Donald Trump a central question among many, including academics, has been: how did this happen? While some academics–cum–public intellectuals produced nuanced takes on Trump’s connection to long histories of white supremacist institutions, race-based campaigning, and contemporary problems of inequality and democratic deficits, many inside and outside academe soon found a culprit in the figure of the “White Working Class.”1 The perennial bugaboo of liberal politics since the Reagan Revolution, the collected resentments and cultural pathologies of the white working class—what Barack Obama famously called the way they cling to their “religion and guns”—seemed to answer the question.2 Yet the category of “white working class” does not so much generate answers to the rise of Trump as demand them.3 Attempts to understand the white working class quickly seized on a set...

You do not currently have access to this content.