The Activist History Review invites proposals for our May 2018 issue, “Corruption.”
At the end of Donald Trump’s first year in office, the Washington Post asked readers whether his administration was “becoming the most corrupt in U.S. History.” The short answer is that it is difficult to know. Trump famously refused to release his tax returns or divest from his businesses, opting instead to place his assets in a “trust” that he can easily control. He broke with decades of precedent on both fronts. According to two attorneys general suing the administration, the president is in clear violation of the “emoluments clause” of the Constitution for using his hotels to profit from public business with officials from Bahrain to Maine. Nor does the administration’s abuse of position stop with Trump.
According to Vox’s Matthew Iglesias, the problem is so significant that “Trump’s corruption deserves to be a central issue in the 2018 midterms.”
Of course, corruption in American politics is nothing new. From the machinations of Boss Tweed to Edwin Edwards’ flagrant “vote for the crook” campaign, it has long been a central facet of politics. As Etowah County Sheriff Todd Entrekin’s more recent (and potentially legal) scheme to use money for prison food to buy a beach house for himself suggests, local power often produces unique forms of corruption that overlap with existing systems of oppression.
The Activist History Review invites proposals that examine the causes and consequences of corruption. Special consideration will be given to essays that consider corruption as a precondition for or byproduct of power.
Potential topics include, but are not limited to:
- Racism as a justification for and organizing logic of corruption.
- Corruption as a byproduct of politics.
- The impact of ideology on systems of corruption.
- The corrupting power of gender.
- Religion, belief, and illicit wealth.
- Corruption and “development.”
- The role(s) of local power in systems of corruption.
Proposals should be no more than 250 words for articles from 1250-2000 words, and should be emailed to William Horne by Monday, April 23rd at 11:59 PM. Please also include a short bio of no more than 100 words.