Swimming the multiple currents: The political and racial time of Barack Obama’s presidency

Kimberley S. Johnson

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    Kimberley Johnson uses the concepts of political and racial time to scrutinize Obama’s presidency. Obama’s presidency is evaluated using Stephen Skowronek’s model of political time. While Obama was initially hailed as a reconstructive president, an overview of his policy success and failures reveals that he was forced to govern as a preemptive president. Obama’s preemptive presidency was also shaped by racial time. His neoliberal race relations approach was met with resistance, within his own coalition and later by the emergence of the Black Lives Matter movement as well as by the rise of right-wing white populism. The latter re-animated the Republican Party which in turn acted as a hard check on Obama’s policy goals. Johnson argues that the Obama presidency was unique not only because he was the first black president, but also because his presidency inhabited both political and racial time.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Title of host publicationLooking Back on President Barack Obama's Legacy
    Subtitle of host publicationHope and Change
    PublisherPalgrave Macmillan
    Number of pages15
    ISBN (Electronic)9783030015459
    ISBN (Print)9783030015442
    StatePublished - Jan 1 2018

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Social Sciences


    Dive into the research topics of 'Swimming the multiple currents: The political and racial time of Barack Obama’s presidency'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this