The Trump Election: Anti-Immigrant Attitudes

by William Minter, Editor, AfricaFocus Bulletin

Page text last updated: November 29 2017 (date each entry added to database can be found in database).

Update November 29, 2017

Just read Go Back to Where You Came From, by Sasha P:olakow-Suransky. Very well-reported comparative study of anti-immigrant views in several European countries (mainly France, Germany, Netherlands, Britain) as well as South Africa and (briefly) the comparison to Trump in the United States. The danger, he stresses is not immigrants but the growth of anti-immigrant views. He interviews many prominent and not so prominent people with these opinions. He does not endorse or excuse, but he argues that pro-immigrant advocates underestimate and misunderstand where the views are coming from, and in so doing actually help them grow both electorally and in impact on public opinion. While there are many differences, the impact of anti-Islamic views in European countries is particular has built bridges to other previously marginalized groups such as gays and Jews, facilitating shifts from left to right. Similarly, opposition to elite failures has fueled anti-immigrant attitudes in South Africa and the United States.


Since the week after the November 2016 election, I have been tracking, and archiving in a simple database, articles, books, and monographs for 21 "intersecting explanations" for the election outcome. As David Leonhardt noted in a New York Times op-ed, "One of the sillier aspects of postelection analysis is the notion that any one factor determined the result." I argue that instead, there are many factors that acted intersectionally to produce the outcome. In analyzing which were more important, how they interacted, and what implications there are for strategy, that complex intersectionality must be taken into account.

For an overview of the database, and links to sources on 21 distinct intersecting explanations, visit

For sources highlighting the broad context of anti-immigrant attitudes and its impact on electoral politics, see database records below.

Other explanations closely intertwined with this one are white racism, islamophobia and anti-semitism, authoritarian values and attitudes, right-wing populism, and misogyny and gender roles,.


Books and Working Papers

This page is part of the No Easy Victories website.