What’s the Matter With White Folks? Race, Class and Voting Behavior in U.S. Elections

A radio-based presentation/seminar from 2006, in which I analyze the longstanding tendency for so many white, lower-middle class/working class voters to vote against their apparent economic interests — by supporting candidates whose economic policies benefit mostly the wealthy — and attempt to explain why this happens. Specifically, I explore the inadequacies of existing theories to explain this voting behavior (traditional Marxist analysis, as well as modern liberal analyses like those of Thomas Frank), and call for an understanding that places whiteness and white privilege squarely in the middle of the narrative. Although there are some slight addenda to this theory in the wake of the 2008 election (and which I explore in my book Between Barack and a Hard Place), the fundamental core of the argument still rings very true even after that election, and will likely prove operative in 2012 as well.

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