At Home With 'Real Americans': Communicating Across the Urban/Rural and Black/White Divides in the 2008 Presidential Election

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Ethnography, Narrative, Race, Ethnicity, Tolerance, Intolerance, Prejudice, Transformative Dialogue, Autoethnography, Arts and Humanities, Communication, Health Communication, Jewish Studies, Quantitative, Qualitative, Comparative, and Historical Methodologies, Social History, Social Psychology and Interaction, Sociology


This ethnographic story seeks to reveal the complexity in talking across the urban/rural and Black/White divide in the 2008 Presidential Election.The story shows the tensions between feeling that an attempt to understand the other might help perpetuate the very intolerance we want to break through and feeling a responsibility to reach out and try to fashion a way out of prejudices and values with which we disagree. Is there a possibility for transformative dialogue and appreciative inquiry, where the four participants in this story might envision and generate a new, coconstructed reality, that all of them could believe in? Should that be our goal?