1932

Abstract

Race has rarely mattered more in US politics than it does now. The election of President Obama has laid bare the racial divisions that continue to fracture the United States. In this review, I explore the emerging scholarship that assesses Obama's impact on social and political life in the United States. I first examine the symbolic meaning of Obama's election to black and white citizens. Second, I analyze how racism has influenced whites' political behavior and policy preferences. Next, I examine how President Obama has influenced public policy. Then, I suggest that the toxic political climate surrounding Obama is just another installment of a saga in which rapid social change is met with anxiety and anger by some whites who perceive their way of life as being under threat. Finally, I illustrate how the “Obama effect” combines with the perceived “Latino threat” to affect whites' political behavior.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-soc-081715-074246
2016-07-30
2024-06-21
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

/deliver/fulltext/soc/42/1/annurev-soc-081715-074246.html?itemId=/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-soc-081715-074246&mimeType=html&fmt=ahah

Literature Cited

  1. Abrajano M, Hajnal Z. 2015. White Backlash: Immigration, Race, and American Politics. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  2. Allport G. 1954. The Nature of Prejudice New York: Basic Books [Google Scholar]
  3. Anbinder T. 1992. Nativism and Slavery: The Northern Know Nothings and the Politics of the 1850s. New York: Oxford Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  4. Arceneaux K, Nicholson S. 2013. Who wants to wave a tea party? The who, what, and why of the Tea Party movement. PS: Polit. Sci. Polit. 45:4700–10 [Google Scholar]
  5. Arkes H, Tetlock P. 2004. Attributions of implicit prejudice, or “Would Jesse Jackson ‘fail’ the Implicit Association Test?”. Psychol. Inq. 15:4257–78 [Google Scholar]
  6. Aronson J, Jannone S, McGlone M, Johnson-Campbell T. 2009. The Obama effect: an experimental test. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 45:957–60 [Google Scholar]
  7. Bartels L. 2008. Unequal Democracy: The Political Economy of the New Gilded Age Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  8. Bernstein M, Young S, Claypool H. 2010. Is Obama's win a gain for blacks?. Soc. Psychol. 41:3147–51 [Google Scholar]
  9. Block R. 2011. Backing Barack because he's black: racially motivated voting in the 2008 election. Soc. Sci. Q. 92:2423–46 [Google Scholar]
  10. Bobo L, Kluegel J. 1997. Status, ideology, and dimensions of whites' racial beliefs and attitudes: progress and stagnation. Racial Attitudes in the 1990s: Continuity and Change SA Tuch, JK Martin 93–120 Greenwood, CT: Praeger [Google Scholar]
  11. Bodenhausen G, Schwarz N, Bless H, Wanke M. 1995. Effects of atypical exemplars on racial beliefs: enlightened racism or generalized appraisals?. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 31:48–63 [Google Scholar]
  12. Bonica A. 2014. Mapping the ideological market place. Am. J. Polit. Sci. 58:2367–86 [Google Scholar]
  13. Brader T, Valentino N, Suhay E. 2008. What triggers public opposition to immigration? Anxiety, group cues, and threat. Am. J. Polit. Sci. 52:4959–78 [Google Scholar]
  14. Brady D, Han H, Pope J. 2007. Primary elections and candidate ideology: out of step with the primary electorate. Leg. Stud. Q. 32:179–108 [Google Scholar]
  15. Carmines E, Stimson JA. 1989. Issue Evolution: Race and the Transformation of American Politics Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  16. Chen A. 2009. The Fifth Freedom: Jobs, Politics, and Civil Rights in the United States, 1941–1972 Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  17. Columb C, Plant E. 2010. Revisiting the Obama effect: exposure to Obama reduces implicit prejudice. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 47:499–501 [Google Scholar]
  18. Dasgupta N, Greenwald A. 2001. On the malleability of automatic attitudes: combating automatic prejudice with images of admired and disliked individuals?. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 81:5800–14 [Google Scholar]
  19. Dawson M. 2011. Not in Our Lifetimes: The Future of Black Politics Chicago: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  20. Devos T, Banaji M. 2005. American = white?. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 88:3447–66 [Google Scholar]
  21. Du Bois WEB. 1903 (2003). The Souls of Black Folk New York: Mod. Libr. [Google Scholar]
  22. Easton D. 1975. A re-assessment of the concept of political support. Br. J. Polit. Sci. 5:435–57 [Google Scholar]
  23. Easton D, Dennis J. 1969. Children in the Political System: Origins of Legitimacy New York, NY: Hill and Wang [Google Scholar]
  24. Edelman M. 1965. The Symbolic Uses of Politics Urbana: Univ. Illinois Press [Google Scholar]
  25. Edwards G. 2012. Creating opportunities? Bipartisanship in the early Obama presidency. Pres. Stud. Q. 93:51081–99 [Google Scholar]
  26. Frey W. 2014. Diversity Explosion: How New Racial Demographics Are Remaking America. Washington, DC: Brookings Inst. Press [Google Scholar]
  27. Gilens M. 2013. Affluence and Influence: Economic Inequality and Political Power in America Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  28. Goldman S, Mutz D. 2014. The Obama Effect: How the 2008 Campaign Changed White Racial Attitudes New York: Russell Sage [Google Scholar]
  29. Greenwald A, Smith C, Sriram N, Bar-Anan Y, Nosek B. 2009. Implicit race attitudes predicted vote in the 2008 U.S. presidential election. Anal. Soc. Issues Public Policy 9:1241–53 [Google Scholar]
  30. Greenwald A, Smith C, Sriram N, Bar-Anan Y, Nosek B. et al. 1998. Measuring individual differences in implicit cognition: the implicit association test. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 74:61464–80 [Google Scholar]
  31. Gutman A, Thompson D. 2012. The Spirit of Compromise: Why Governing Demands It and Campaigning Undermines It. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  32. Haney-Lopez I. 2014. Dog-Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class New York, NY: Oxford Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  33. Henry P, Sears D. 2002. The Symbolic Racism 2000 Scale. Polit. Psychol. 23:3253–83 [Google Scholar]
  34. Hofstadter R. 1964. The Paranoid Style in American Politics, and Other Essays New York, NY: Vintage [Google Scholar]
  35. Hosang D. 2010. Racial Propositions: Ballot Initiatives and the Making of Postwar California Berkeley: Univ. Calif. Press [Google Scholar]
  36. Hunt M, Wilson D. 2009. Race/ethnicity, perceived discrimination, and beliefs about the meaning of an Obama presidency. Du Bois Rev. 6:1173–92 [Google Scholar]
  37. Hutchings V. 2003. Democratic Accountability: How Citizens Learn About Politics Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  38. Hutchings V. 2009. Change or more of the same? Evaluating racial attitudes in the Obama era. Public Opin. Q. 75:5917–42 [Google Scholar]
  39. Jacobson G. 2011. Legislative success and political failure: the public's reaction to Barack Obama's early presidency. Pres. Stud. Q. 41:2220–43 [Google Scholar]
  40. Kaiser C, Drury B, Spalding K, Cheryan S, O'Brien L. 2009. The ironic consequences of Obama's election: decreased support for social justice. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 45:556–59 [Google Scholar]
  41. Kalmoe N, Piston S. 2013. Is implicit prejudice against blacks politically consequential? Evidence from the AMP. Public Opin. Q. 77:305–22 [Google Scholar]
  42. Katz D. 1960. The functional approach to the study of attitudes. Public Opin. Q. 24:163–204 [Google Scholar]
  43. Kinder D, Dale-Riddle A. 2012. The End of Race? Obama, 2008, and Racial Politics in America New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  44. Kinder D, Sanders L. 1996. Divided by Color: Racial Politics and Democratic Ideals Chicago, IL: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  45. Knowles D. 2014. The 113th Congress was the second least productive in history. Bloomberg Dec. 21. http://www.bloomberg.com/politics/articles/2014-12-21/the-113th-congress-was-the-second-least-productive-in-history [Google Scholar]
  46. Knowles E, Lowery B, Schaumberg R. 2009. Anti-egalitarians for Obama? Group dominance motivation and the Obama vote. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 45:965–69 [Google Scholar]
  47. Lipset SM, Raab EA. 1978. The Politics of Unreason: Right-Wing Extremism in America, 1790–1977 Chicago, IL: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  48. Lowdnes J. 2008. From the New Deal to the New Right: Race and the Southern Origins of Modern Conservatism New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  49. Lybarger JE, Monteith MJ. 2010. The effect of Obama saliency on individual-level racial bias: silver bullet or smokescreen. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 47:647–52 [Google Scholar]
  50. MacLean N. 1995. Behind the Mask of Chivalry: The Making of the Second Ku Klux Klan New York: Oxford Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  51. Marx D, Ko S, Friedman R. 2009. The “Obama effect”: how a salient role model reduces race-based performance differences. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 45:953–56 [Google Scholar]
  52. McAdam D, Kloos A. 2014. Deeply Divided: Racial Politics and Social Movements in Postwar America New York: Oxford Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  53. McKenzie B. 2011. Barack Obama, Jeremiah Wright, and public opinion in the 2008 presidential primaries. Polit. Psychol. 32:6943–61 [Google Scholar]
  54. Noel H. 2013. Political Ideologies and Political Parties in America New York: Cambridge Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  55. OMB (Off. Manag. Budg.) 2013. Impacts and costs of the October 2013 federal government shutdown Off. Manag. Budg., Washington, DC [Google Scholar]
  56. Ornstein N, Mann T. 2012. It's Even Worse than It Looks: How the American Constitutional System Collided with the New Politics of Extremism New York: Basic Books [Google Scholar]
  57. Page B, Shapiro R. 1983. Effects of public opinion on policy. Am. J. Polit. Sci. 77:175–90 [Google Scholar]
  58. Parker CS. 2014. Wither the Tea Party? The future of a political movement. Issues in Governance Studies 66 Washington, DC: Brookings Inst. [Google Scholar]
  59. Parker CS, Barreto MA. 2014. Change They Can't Believe In: The Tea Party and Reactionary Politics in America Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  60. Parker C, Barreto M, Sawyer M, Towler C. 2009. A black man in the White House? The role of racism and patriotism in the 2008 presidential election. Du Bois Rev. 6:1193–218 [Google Scholar]
  61. Pasek J, Stark T, Krosnick J, Tompson T, Payne K. 2014. Attitudes toward blacks in the Obama era: changing distributions and impacts on job approval and electoral choice, 2008–2012. Public Opin. Q. 78:276–302 [Google Scholar]
  62. Payne BK, Cheng CM, Govorun O, Stewart B. 2005. An inkblot for attitudes: affect misattribution as implicit measurement. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 89:277–93 [Google Scholar]
  63. Perez E. 2010. Explicit evidence on the import of implicit attitudes: the IAT and immigration policy judgments. Polit. Behav. 32:4517–45 [Google Scholar]
  64. Perlestein R. 2001. Before the Storm: Barry Goldwater and the Unmaking of the American Consensus New York: Hill & Wang [Google Scholar]
  65. Philpot T, Shaw D, McGowen E. 2009. Winning the race: black voter turnout and the 2008 presidential election. Public Opin. Q. 73:995–1022 [Google Scholar]
  66. Piston S. 2010. How explicit racial prejudice hurt Obama in the 2008 election. Polit. Behav. 32:431–51 [Google Scholar]
  67. Plant E, Devine P, Cox W, Columb C, Miller S. et al. 2009. The Obama effect: decreasing implicit prejudice and stereotyping. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 45:961–64 [Google Scholar]
  68. Ramakrishnan SK, Wong J, Lee T, Junn J. 2009. Race-based considerations and the Obama vote: evidence from the 2008 National Asian American Survey. Du Bois Rev. 6:1219–38 [Google Scholar]
  69. Redlawsk D, Tolbert C, Franko F. 2010. Voters, emotions, and race in 2008: Obama as the first black president. Polit. Res. Q. 63:4875–89 [Google Scholar]
  70. Schaffner B. 2011. Racial salience and the Obama vote. Polit. Psychol. 32:6963–88 [Google Scholar]
  71. Schmidt K, Nosek B. 2010. Implicit (and explicit) racial attitudes barely changed during Barack Obama's presidential campaign and early presidency. J. Exp. Soc. Psychol. 46:308–14 [Google Scholar]
  72. Schuman H. 2000. The perils of correlation, the lure of labels, and beauty of negative results. Racial Politics: The Debate About Racism in America D Sears, J Sidanius, L Bobo 302–23 Chicago, IL: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  73. Sears D, Henry PJ. 2003. The origins of symbolic racism. J. Pers. Soc. Psychol. 85:2259–275 [Google Scholar]
  74. Sears D, McConahay J. 1973. The Politics of Violence: The New Urban Blacks and the Watts Riots Boston: Houghton-Mifflin [Google Scholar]
  75. Sidanius J, Pratto F. 1999. Social Dominance: An Inter-Group Theory of Social Hierarchy and Oppression New York: Cambridge Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  76. Skocpol T, Williamson V. 2011. The Tea Party and the Remaking of Republican Conservatism New York: Oxford Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  77. Smith R. 1997. Civic Ideals: Conflicting Visions of Citizenship in U.S. History. New Haven, CT: Yale Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  78. Steele CM, Aronson J. 1995. Stereotype threat and the intellectual test performance of African Americans. J. Personal. Soc. Psychol. 69:5797–811 [Google Scholar]
  79. Stephens-Davidowitz S. 2014. The cost of racial animus on a black candidate: evidence using Google search data. J. Public Econ. 118:26–40 [Google Scholar]
  80. Stout CT, Le D. 2012. Living the dream: Barack Obama and blacks' changing perceptions of the American dream. Soc. Sci. Q. 93:51338–59 [Google Scholar]
  81. Stubbs J. 2003/2004. The bottom rung of America's race ladder: After the September 11 catastrophe are American Muslims becoming America's new n…s?. J. Law Relig. 19:1115–51 [Google Scholar]
  82. Sugrue T. 1996. The Origins of the Urban Crisis: Race and Inequality in Postwar Detroit. Princeton, NJ: Princeton Univ. Press [Google Scholar]
  83. Tesler M. 2016. Post-Racial or Most-Racial: Race and Politics in the Obama Era Chicago: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  84. Tesler M, Sears D. 2010. Obama's Race: The 2008 Election and the Dream of a Post-Racial America Chicago: Univ. Chicago Press [Google Scholar]
  85. Valentino N, Brader T. 2011. The sword's other edge: perceptions of discrimination and racial policy opinion after Obama. Public Opin. Q. 75:2210–26 [Google Scholar]
  86. Valentino N, Sears D. 2005. Old Times there are not forgotten: race and partisan realignment in the contemporary south. Am. J. Polit. Sci. 49:672–88 [Google Scholar]
  87. Walker J, Aberbach J. 1973. Race in the City Boston: Little, Brown [Google Scholar]
  88. Wallace SJ. 2011. It's complicated: Latinos, President Obama, and the 2012 Election. Soc. Sci. Q. 93:51360–83 [Google Scholar]
  89. Weatherford M. 2012. The wages of competence: Obama, the economy, and the 2010 midterm elections. Pres. Stud. Q. 42:18–39 [Google Scholar]
  90. Welch S, Sigelman L. 2011. The “Obama effect” and white racial attitudes. Am. Acad. Polit. Soc. Sci. 634:207–20 [Google Scholar]
  91. Wilson D, Davis D. 2011. Reexamining racial resentment: conceptualization and content. Ann. Am. Acad. Polit. Soc. Sci. 634:117–33 [Google Scholar]
/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-soc-081715-074246
Loading
  • Article Type: Review Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error