In August 2019, the American Political Science Association (APSA), the world’s leading political science professional organization, held its Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. Dr. Dean Snyder, Assistant Professor of Political Economy, played a key role in organizing the meeting as program chair of the New Political Science Division – one of 49 specialized divisions that make up the APSA.
The New Political Science Division’s mission is to make the study of politics relevant to “the struggle for a better world” by supporting scholarship that reflects a commitment to progressive social change. In August 2018, the New Political Science Division elected Dean Snyder as its 2019 program chair.
“Being selected as a program chair was a real honor,” Snyder says. “It put me in position to create platforms for academic debate on some of the core political, social, and ecological challenges facing us today.”
The theme of the 2019 meeting of the APSA was “Populism and Privilege,” which covered issues like the rise of right-wing populism and the politics of identity. Snyder was well-suited for the task, having published a co-authored article in the journal New Political Science on corporate media coverage of the rise of the Tea Party in 2012.
“Since the initial burst of right-wing populism in the late-2000s, one of the most important developments has been the global far-right’s push to roll back environmental regulations and transform government institutions to accelerate the exploitation of the natural world,” Snyder adds. “Trump’s efforts to weaken the EPA and Bolsonaro’s opening of the Amazon to transnational agribusiness are two stark examples.”
Snyder reviewed over 100 academic paper and panel proposals to construct the New Political Science Division’s conference program, which ultimately included 18 panel presentations and roundtable discussions on themes like “Race, Class, and Identity in the Age of Trump,” “Social Justice and Community Empowerment in Divided Times, “Political Socialization in the Age of Digital Media,” and “Populist Politics in the Anthropocene.”
Dean Snyder joined the Antioch College faculty in 2015 and teaches courses on the politics of global capitalism, international relations, and political ecology. His dissertation, Commercial Capital and the Political Economy of Agricultural Overproduction, which examines the political-economic development of industrial agriculture, was honored with the New Political Science Dissertation Award in 2016.