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The Obamas and a (Post) Racial America?$
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Gregory Parks and Matthew Hughey

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199735204

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199735204.001.0001

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Measuring Racial Progress in America: The Tangled Path

Measuring Racial Progress in America: The Tangled Path

Chapter:
(p.1) Chapter 1 Measuring Racial Progress in America: The Tangled Path
Source:
The Obamas and a (Post) Racial America?
Author(s):

Matthew W. Hughey (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199735204.003.0001

An event barely conceivable just a few years ago, the meteoric rise of the Obamas to the White House is a watershed moment. The First Family and reactions to them are hailed as evidence of both a “Post-Racial America” and a “Racist America.” Taking this debate as a starting point, this chapter first surveys the common discourse by which people admit racial inequality while minimalizing its effects and social causes. Second, it chronicles the zigzag path of racial progress through key moments of legal battles. Third, it provides a cursory view of five key social arenas: attitudes, housing, education, wealth, and incarceration. While some of the data is mixed, this chapter unapologetically demonstrates that despite progress in the Age of Obama, racial inequality is neither natural nor predestined, but remains well-entrenched and tethered to the promotion of white supremacy.

Keywords:   attitudes, discourse, education, housing, incarceration, post-racial, progress, wealth, white supremacy

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