John Banzhaf, a professor at George Washington University Law School, says there is an urgent need for “white middle-class studies” to understand President Trump’s supporters.
The International Conference on New Directions in the Humanities in London on Thursday will feature Mr. Banzhaf’s plan for figuring out why many reporters and academics failed to understand Mr. Trump’s appeal to millions of Americans.
“[My presentation] will consider, especially in light of the unexpected election of Donald Trump and alarming reports that life expectancy is surprisingly tumbling among white middle-class Americans, whether a new discipline called ‘blue-collar studies’ or ‘white middle-class studies’ should be added to these other established academic disciplines,” the professor said in a statement to The Daily Caller.
The conference website also includes a preview of the professor’s work, which will address the “abject failure” by analysts to grasp Mr. Trump’s base of support.
“Such new studies are needed for exactly the same reasons we have Black Studies, LGBT Studies, and others: that we urgently need to understand more about these subcultures, even though the interaction and knowledge gaps between cultures are greater regarding people without degrees than with these other groups,” Mr. Banzhaf said.
“Truly comprehending their concerns and views would help politicians and society generally to better address and respect them, and enhance the all-important element of predictability regarding public policy, both in the U.S. and in other major countries where the same sheepskin divisions seem to exist and create similar problems.”
Mr. Trump secured the White House on Nov. 8 by defeating his Democratic challenger, Hillary Clinton, with 306 Electoral College votes to her 232 votes.
The Republican candidate stunned political observers by winning states such as Wisconsin, Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Florida.