Did Donald Trump decisively transform and alter the course of US foreign policy?
All presidents promise change, but few presidents promise changes as radical as Trump did during his presidency. The extent to which Trump delivered on that promise, however, remains hotly debated with little or no agreement. The chapters in this edited volume argue that much of this debate is a dialogue of the deaf where scholars speak past rather than to each other, where the basis for claims about change or continuity is unclear and where the argument and knowledge, consequently, fails to progress. At its heart, this is a problem of theory and methods.
Employing a diverse range of theoretical and methodological perspectives, this book seeks to move the debate beyond a superficial focus on events to more fundamental questions of how change is defined, measured and explained and in doing so, attempts to advance understanding of foreign policy change and the extent to which Trump can really be considered to have been a transformative president.
The chapters in this book were originally published as a special issue of the journal, Global Affairs.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Trump presidency: continuity and change in US foreign policy 1. The Trump foreign policy record and the concept of transformational change 2. What makes America great? Donald Trump, national identity, and U.S. foreign policy 3. When ends Trump means: continuity versus change in US counterterrorism policy 4. Security and polarization in Trump’s America: securitization and the domestic politics of threatening others 5. Low- conceptual complexity and Trump’s foreign policy 6. Why American grand strategy has changed: international constraint, generational shift, and the return of realism 7. “You think our country’s so innocent?” The Trump administration’s policy on democratic practices in Russia and the challenge to US identity 8. Crisis, narratives, and the construction of US- Middle East relations: continuity and change in world history and Trump’s America First 9. The Trump administration: continuity and change in US foreign policy
Matthew Alan Hill is the International Relations and Politics Lead at Liverpool John Moores University in the UK. His current research interests are in US foreign policy, in particular, democracy promotion, and dystopian world predictions. His most recent publication is The Rise and Fall of US Democracy Promotion: From Carter to Biden (Routledge, 2022).
Steven Hurst is Reader in Politics at Manchester Metropolitan University in the UK. His research interests are US foreign policy toward the Middle East and aspects of Foreign Policy Analysis. He is the author most recently of The United States and the Iranian Nuclear Programme (2018).