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Author Sheets, Penelope Helen
Title Multicultural Patriotism and Minority Candidates: Campaign Messaging, News Coverage, and Persuasion in American Politics
book jacket
Descript 184 p
Note Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 72-11, Section: A, page:
Adviser: David Domke
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Washington, 2011
This dissertation explored the communicative means by which non-normative political candidates---specifically non-White candidates---can gain political support from majority voters. I focused on the strategic invocation of national identity by non-White candidates, the responses of journalists to those cues, and the effects on voters. I analyzed (1) the patterns of national and racial cues employed by Barack Obama and journalists during the 2008 presidential campaign, (2) how messages privileging national or racial cues differentially affected voters' perceptions of policy issues and Obama himself as he took office in January 2009, and (3) how, more generally, national or racial cues impacted voters' perceptions---on both explicit and implicit levels---of candidates of differing racial backgrounds. Methodologically, the project combined quantitative content analysis with survey and experimental methods. The results suggest that, generally, offering a multicultural message that fuses race and nation may be the most strategic option for non-White, and specifically Black, candidates. By studying political communication in three key locations---political messages, news content, and public opinion---I sought in my dissertation to shed light on the reasons for, and effects of group identity cues across the political environment. The work presented here has implications for understanding how future non-normative candidates might appeal to voters, and thus how the democratic ideal of true representation of the people might be realized in future elections
School code: 0250
Host Item Dissertation Abstracts International 72-11A
Subject Business Administration, Marketing
Psychology, Social
Speech Communication
Political Science, General
Alt Author University of Washington
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