The Obama Phenomenon: Deliberative Conversationalism & the Pursuit of Community through Presidential Politics
70 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2008 Last revised: 2 Apr 2010
Does political theory have an interesting relationship to presidential politics? This Article argues that the public statements of Senator Barack Obama exemplify an anti-foundationalist theory of political dispute resolution. This theory, called "deliberative conversationalism," attempts to answer the question of how agreement is possible in a republican democracy. The theory's central features include deliberation, conversation, transformative change, community, and, consensus. These are also elements in Senator Obama's vision for a new American politics. Understanding the relationship between the theory of deliberative conversationalism and Senator Obama's public statements provides a window into the mind of a politician who may become the next president of the United States.
Keywords: barack obama, presidential politics, deliberative conversationalism, democracy, political theory
JEL Classification: K1
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation