Abstract

Political satire and irony flourish especially when other forms of political critique are curtailed, or when conventional political categories, modes of expression, and organization seem inadequate—an apt description, many would argue, of early twenty-first-century America. This article explores how satirical political activists who call themselves the Billionaires, along with Comedy Central's "fake news" stars Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert, engage two of the most delicate issues in American cultural politics: surging wealth inequality and the role of big money in politics. In contrast to Occupy Wall Street protesters, the Billionaires follow a strictly elegant dress code, say precisely the opposite of what they mean, and carefully craft a brand image designed to appeal to corporate news media.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1944-768X
Print ISSN
0037-783X
Pages
pp. 145-168
Launched on MUSE
2014-04-30
Open Access
No
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