The Obama Effect and our National Intellectual Subconscious

A recent, but small, [study]( of whites and blacks before and after Obama was elected president revealed a very interesting phenomenon:
> Now researchers have documented what they call an Obama effect, showing that a performance gap between African-Americans and whites on a 20-question test administered before Mr. Obama’s nomination all but disappeared when the exam was administered after his acceptance speech and again after the presidential election.
WNYC’s awesome science podcast [Radio Lab](, which more akin to [This American Life]( than say the slightly more run-of-the-mill [Science Friday](, discussed this and in addition interviewed [Claude Steele]( who has conducted similar studies that revealed how self-perception can play a significant role in affecting academic performance and that simple environmental changes can effectively nullify that effect.
The Obama Effect, known as the [Stereotype Threat]( among academics, reveals in yet another way Obama could, without doing anything explicit, without enacting a single policy, could help elevate this country in a very meaningful way.
But it also raises the question for me: how does having a stupid president for 8 years affect our National Intellect? And can stupidity in the White House actually pose a much greater risk to our society beyond bad legislation and corruption?
* [Listen to the Obama Effect on Radio Lab](


One Comment on “The Obama Effect and our National Intellectual Subconscious”

  1. dental says:

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