En annorlunda exceptionalism

President Barack Obama och en klassisk amerikansk tankefigur


  • Dag Blanck
  • Frida Stranne


This article deals with how President Barack Obama has related to American exceptionalism, and how he developed a distinct version of the concept. We begin by discussing the background and meanings of American exceptionalism, making a distinction between its academic and political use. Based on three of his major speeches, we then discuss Obama’s relationship to the concept, arguing that his initial skepticism to American exceptionalism, which was met by criticism, notably from American conservatives, was replaced by a greater acceptance, especially with regard to foreign policy. We also argue that even though Obama embraced exceptionalism he also changed and expanded it, especially with regard to American history.