Government and East Asian Studies Professor Mary Alice Haddad discusses the significance of Barack Obama’s candidacy in the Hartford Courant, suggesting a generational shift in American politics similar to the one that Japan has been going through in the past decade:
A new generation is coming to power in American politics. Its only member among the current set of contenders, Barack Obama, might not win this particular election, but we will see more and more leaders like him in the years to come.
November 2008 will be the first national election in which a majority of voters will have received all of their schooling after the 1965 Civil Rights Act. These Americans are not free of racial stereotypes, but those stereotypes are not as central to their worldviews as they were for previous generations… Separate-but-equal might still be practiced in some places, but, for the first time this year, a majority of voting Americans will not have experienced it as part of a national ideology.
Full article: New Generation Begins Rise to Leadership