In the face of Trumpism and its peculiar mix of the buffoonish and the lethal, Foster suggests that we “pump up” past theoretical concepts by raising them to a higher degree. Social media, for example, could thereby be considered the “fifth estate,” a force that outdoes the “fourth estate” of journalistic media and thereby evacuates the last residues of the public sphere that, over fifty years ago, Jürgen Habermas associated with the advent of print culture. Peter Sloterdijk's notion of cynical reason, too, must be raised to a higher power in order to comprehend the Trumpist mentality; perhaps in this post-truth era, we should speak instead of “noncynical unreason”? And while the concept of the “primal father” is so outrageous that it cannot be inflated, Foster argues, it is one that we must grapple with in the face of a figure who, like Freud's figure, embodies the law and simultaneously performs its transgression.

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