Introduction: Apples and Bananas by Merryl Wyn Davies

Time passes. Things change. Time passes. Times change. Time passes. Science tells us time is a constant. Times, the times in which we live, however, move on at variable rates relative to human activity, proclivity and choice.Times change repeatedly and, increasingly, in rapid succession. Each newly identified era puts values in the spotlight. The temper of the times derives its character from the rearrangement, reassessment, revitalisation or renegotiation of established values. Change is a question of which values alter or adapt or how values are contested. Now times move on so swiftly their temper is known simply for coming after what went before.Times are post the past passé: we are post-industrial, postmodern, postnormal. But what is to be made of values now that dictionaries define the times as post- truth, the word of 2016, while fake news has become the word of 2017? If this is the sum of our times what earthly good can come of it?
 
The origin of post-truth times is not hard to find. With hardly a raised eyebrow there was consensual agreement we have entered post-truth times, ushered in and epitomised by the presidential campaign and victory of Donald J Trump. The ability of a candidate for the most powerful office in the world to lie glibly, unashamedly and repeatedly without hesitation or equivocation, sans apology despite the proffer of compelling video evidence of his inexactitudes, mesmerised media and general public alike. Yet this was not the real meaning of post-truth. The true temper of post-truth times was not the lies and hyperbolic incoherence of what Trump said but that so many of his devoted followers openly acknowledged that they did not take him literally, did not necessarily expect him to do what he promised and were unconcerned  by any proffered evidence of his lies and dissembling. No matter what the truth, a sufficient constituency existed determined to vote Trump regardless, and this constituency had no difficulty in identifying itself as ‘values voters’ who cherished Trumpism for its political incorrectness.
 
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