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Obama on Our Minds: The Impact of Obama on the Psyche of America$
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Lori A. Barker

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780199390618

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199390618.001.0001

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Changing the Course of Race Relations in America

Changing the Course of Race Relations in America

From Prevention of Discrimination to Promotion of Racial Equality

(p.93) 5 Changing the Course of Race Relations in America
Obama on Our Minds: The Impact of Obama on the Psyche of America

John F. Dovidio

Oxford University Press

In this chapter, John Dovidio explains how the election of President Barack Obama has the potential to transform race relations in the United States substantially because it psychologically reframes the issue from one of prevention of bias to one of promotion of equality. He considers the current psychological nature of racial bias in America, identifying why progress toward equality is increasingly difficult to achieve. Dovidio then identifies the significant potential impact of regular “contact” with President Obama for reducing psychological barriers and promoting more positive intergroup motivations. The author concludes by considering circumstances and processes that could limit President Obama’s effectiveness and positive impact on race relations.

Keywords:   Barack Obama, race relations, racial bias, discrimination, equality

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