xiv Introduction represent signs of progress 2020 saw some of the most robust challenges to the 200-year monopoly on power held by straight, White, cisgender men. However, we suspect that most readers, like us, will find the disruptions posed by the global pandemic and attempted autocoup to be the more mem- orable. In the following chapters, our contributors explore each in turn. The book’s first section—Disrupting the Status Quo—opens with three chapters that consider the greater diversity of presidential candidates during the Democratic primary campaign (including the eventual vice president). These chapters feature qualitative studies that examine the historical candi- dacies of an openly gay man—former South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg—and the six women seeking the Democratic Party nomination for president, including Harris, who went on to make history as the first woman, Black, and South Asian vice president of the United States. In Chapter 1, “Looking In/Looking Out: Pete Buttigieg’s Not-So-Queer Run for the Presidency,” Bryan G. Pepper and Mitchell S. McKinney argue that the historic candidacy of the first openly gay man seeking a major politi- cal party’s nomination to the U.S. presidency was driven by his desire to be accepted as a traditional (i.e., normal) public figure. By eschewing an identity or agenda that might be viewed as violating the values and expectations of normative politics, Buttigieg often framed his gayness in terms of his military service, his faith and religious practice, and his marriage. The authors assess Buttigieg’s quest for the presidency, including his rise as an early front-runner for the 2020 presidential nomination in a crowded and diverse field of Democratic candidates reactions to his campaign, particularly from gay activists and its impact on the status of gay, trans, bisexual, and intersex individuals in the United States. Chapter 2, “Mediating Race and Gender in Campaign 2020: The Cooking with Kamala Videos,” examines how the Black, South Asian, female candi- date for the Democratic nomination for president confronted racialized and gendered campaign discourses through a series of videos that showed her cooking with different celebrities and voters. In this chapter, Trevor Parry- Giles and eight doctoral students at the University of Maryland contend that Harris transcended the rhetorical double bind faced by all women and par- ticularly women of color who seek high political office by relying on her multiracial consciousness to appeal to a broader American audience. Thus, they argue, Harris addressed and recaptured control over her political identity—which has been defined by discourses of race and gender from the earliest days of her political career to her ascendancy to the vice presidency— through a multiethnic rhetorical framing of cooking. In Chapter 3, “Rhetoric of Optimism and Promise of Transformation: Concession Speeches by U.S. Presidential Women Candidates in 2020,” Julia A. Spiker examines the rhetorical strategies used by each of the record six women who sought the Democratic nomination for president when they
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