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Racial Polarization

In: Social Issues

Submitted By dsspann23
Words 6638
Pages 27
Is Racial Antipathy Increasing? The Polarizing Effect of Obama’s Presidency

Abstract Previous research has shown that individuals who are highly conservative are more likely to hold negative perceptions of African-Americans and other minorities. Furthermore, racial antipathy affects the way individuals perceive Barack Obama. In light of recent trends, this study tested whether individuals who identify themselves as Republicans are substantially more likely to maintain negative racial attitudes. The study also investigated whether white Americans are more likely than other racial groups to harbor racial prejudices and disapprove of Barack Obama. Results from this study indicated that racial resentment plays a significant role in contemporary politics. Data from between-subjects ANOVA and correlational analysis suggested that the Democratic Party and Republican Party are polarized in regards to racial issues. Moreover, conservative whites are the most likely racial group to hold racial prejudices against African-Americans. Finally, disapproval of President Obama is highly associated with high levels of negative racial stereotypes.
Keywords: race, antipathy, conservatism, prejudices, Obama

Is Racial Antipathy Increasing? The Polarizing Effect of Obama’s Presidency In 2008, Barack Obama became the first African-American to become President of the United States. His election marked a pivotal turning point in American politics. To millions, Obama’s election signaled the start of a post-racial America. The country was infused with euphoria as citizens from diverse backgrounds celebrated his historical victory. For a brief period, grievous injuries and acts of unkindness committed throughout America’s history were forgiven. Citizens who had constructed emotional barriers, in response to racial discrimination, now waved American flags proudly. Citizens...

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