Race and gender in current American politics: A discourse-analytic perspective

Camelia Suleiman, Daniel C. O'Connell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Male and female, black and white political interviewees (M. Albright, B. Clinton, H. Clinton, B. Obama, C. Powell, and C. Rice) of Larry King on CNN TV are used to ascertain whether ethnicity and gender affect the way politicians actually speak. Qualitative comparisons are made of Obama's hesitations and rate with and without a threatening context. A number of normalized response measures are evaluated quantitatively: percentage of syllables spoken by each interviewee, and use of interjections, interruptions, self-referent I, non-standard English, y' know, and syllables of laughter. Senator Obama and Secretary of State Rice become the focus of the comparative evidence that both ethnicity and gender do indeed influence the speaking of politicians.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-389
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Psycholinguistic Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • Gender
  • Perspectivity
  • Political discourse
  • Race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Psychology (all)
  • Linguistics and Language


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