The Anthropology of Politics: U.S. Presidential Election Edition

With his right hand raised in the air, an old, reddish-grey haired man rests his left hand on a Bible held by an elegantly-dressed young woman.

After a highly-charged and often controversial political campaign, Donald Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States on January 20, 2017. (This image is in the public domain. Source: Wikimedia Commons.)


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Fall 2016



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Course Description

This course examines the birth and international expansion of an American industry of political marketing. It focuses attention on the cultural processes, sociopolitical contexts and moral utopias that shape the practice of political marketing in the U.S. and in different countries. By looking at the debates and expert practices at the core of the business of politics, the course explores how the "universal" concept of democracy is interpreted and reworked through space and time, while examining how different cultural groups experimenting with political marketing understand the role of citizens in a democracy.

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Maria Vidart-Delgado. 21A.506 The Anthropology of Politics: U.S. Presidential Election Edition. Fall 2016. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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