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Narratives of change and citizen participation in modern political campaigning: The origins of the Trump movement

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This article offers insights into how the storytelling aspects of the Donald Trump presidential campaign of 2016 contributed to the rise of the Trump movement and paved his way to the White House. With 50 Trump speeches being analysed, the study reconstructs the narrative Donald Trump communicated to the target audience on his way to the highest office. Exploring the idea of Donald Trump as a storyteller, the article discusses how the ideology of the Trump base was constructed and an eagerness to participate was ignited by the narrative. Methodologically, the article derives the seven principles of political storytelling from its theoretical framework and applies them as an analytical frame to the analysis of the narrative structure of the Trump campaign. The seven principles suggest that the political narrative benefits from being targeted, empathic, happy-ending, consistent, well delivered, well communicated and engaging.
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Keywords: Donald Trump; narrative; participation; political campaigns; social groups; storytelling

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Dublin Institute of Technology

Publication date: November 1, 2017

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