Trump, Television and the Media: From Drama to “Fake News” to Tweetstorms

One-Day Conference: Friday 12 June 2020

London Metropolitan University


The election of Donald Trump in November 2016 initiated a presidency that has become the most media-driven and media-critiqued in American history. Trump’s constructed identity as a media celebrity has been a central element of his political style, as he exploits a variety of media for political messaging. At the same time, television and the media more broadly has quickly become attuned to the extraordinary climate and fast-paced news environment of a presidency that constantly challenges administrative and political norms. As television addresses the contemporary era in genres from drama to satire, the boundaries between fact and fiction, realism and excess seem increasingly difficult to locate. All of this has occurred within a national experience that includes the unleashing of massive divisions within American culture, and the televised impeachment hearings of a president for only the third time in U.S. history.

This one-day conference seeks to explore both the influence of the media on the Trump presidency, and the impact of the Trump era on a variety of media forms. The aim is to bring together scholars from a variety of fields for interdisciplinary discussion of this extraordinary era in American politics and culture. Contributors may choose to address the conference theme by, for example, considering American TV’s fictional depictions of the era, exploring the relationship between Trump and the news media, or examining the political impact of this media presidency, amongst other topics. It is envisaged that the breadth of papers will go beyond the specific realm of the presidency to encompass the political and cultural backdrop of racial and gender divisions and of protest movements such as #MeToo, Time’s Up and Black Lives Matter. The ultimate aim of the conference is to reflect upon on how the confluence of Trump and the media has affected America’s cultural landscape and the nation’s politics.

Proposals for both individual papers and panels are invited. Abstracts for individual papers of 20 minutes should be a maximum of 300 words. Panel proposals should include three individual paper proposals and a 100 word overview of the panel topic. All proposals should be accompanied by a short author biog.

The deadline for submission of proposals is: Friday 20 March 2020.

Responses to proposals will be emailed within two weeks of the deadline.

Please send proposals and any questions to the Conference Organiser, Dr Karen McNally, at the following email address: