Sociology conference obsesses over hatred of Trump

Sandor Farkas
Collegiate Network Fellow

  • The Southern Sociological Society is holding its annual conference this week on the theme of "Racial Theory, Analysis, and Politics in Trump America."
  • The program for the conference features numerous crude drawings of President Trump, depicting him as a diaper-wearing infant enamored with nuclear weapons and the Ku Klux Klan.
  • The program for a sociology conference on “Trump America” features numerous crude depictions of President Trump, as well as 32 events discussing Trump.

    The Southern Sociological Society aims to promote “the development of sociology as a profession” and “the maintenance of high academic professional and ethical standards,” including “valid and reliable methods and research.”

    "Never trust those crooked regional sociological societies."   

    “Racial Theory, Analysis, and Politics in Trump America” is the title of its 81st annual conference, which runs from April 4-7.

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    The conference program features two full-color illustrations that crudely depict the President as a baby, six sketches employing similar themes, and nine satirical presidential tweets (each of which comes with a disclaimer alerting the sociologists that it is “not an actual tweet”).

    The front cover shows the president as a grotesque and overweight infant, sitting in a soiled diaper on top of an image of hooded Klansmen while playing with missiles and nuclear bombs. His outstretched left arm, replete with a tiny hand, may be an attempt to depict him performing the Nazi salute.

    A cross superimposed on a series of concentric circles appears above the word “Trump” in the conference title, suggesting the crosshairs on a rifle site. Campus Reform asked the society’s president and the program committee chair if this was intentional, but received no response as of press time.

    The back cover depicts a similarly-styled Trump, this time with his diaper sagging down and kneeling in a pool of urine inside his crib. 

    Black and white sketches scattered throughout the program, meanwhile, depict Trump in various other unflattering ways, with one showing him urinating on the floor while holding what appears to be a balloon labeled “WW3,” while another drawing portrays him smashing the EPA and healthcare.

    The conference schedule indicates that there will be 32 workshops, papers, lectures, discussions, and other sessions that explicitly deal with Trump, including a discussion about “Approaching Resistance to TrumpAmerica” and a session on “How to Talk About Current Events in the Classroom in the Age of Trump without Getting Fired.” 

    Other related topics, such as “Coverage of Hillary During Election,” are not included in the 32-session figure.

    Some sessions, such as “Organizing a Campus-Wide Social Justice Event,” appear to advise professors on how to use their positions to influence campus politics.

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    In a nod to what Trump might think of the conference were he aware of its existence, one of the fake presidential Tweets read, “#SSS2018 is TOTAL FAKE NEWS. Never trust those crooked regional sociological societies.”

    The Southern Sociological Society counts 18 sociology departments among its members, including East Carolina University, Mississippi State University, the University of Houston, the University of Maryland-Baltimore County, the University of Memphis, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and Virginia Tech.

    Several university departments are also listed as sponsors of the conference, such as Mississippi State University, Winthrop University, and the University of Memphis.

    Follow the author of this article on Twitter: @SFarkas48





    Sandor Farkas

    Sandor Farkas

    Collegiate Network Fellow
    Sandor Farkas is a Collegiate Network Fellow at Campus Reform. Prior to starting this fellowship, he was a Tikvah Fellow. Farkas earned a degree in history from Dartmouth College, where he was editor-in-chief of The Dartmouth Review. Farkas also serves as an officer in the Virginia Army National Guard.
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