Skip Nav

Princeton Releases Michelle Obama's Senior Thesis

February 22, 2008

❶This is well noted in statements below. Class and upward mobility will probably influence the dependent variables in the same way that time spent influenced the independent variables.

Featured in Politics

Was the Georgia State Line ‘Blocked Off’ Because of Hurricane Florence?
NEWSLETTERS
Trending on Freedom Outpost

Today, the student body is a lot more progressive and diverse. Completed theses are kept in Mudd Manuscript Library and are generally available to the public for viewing and scanning. Before today, callers to Mudd requesting information on Obama's thesis were told that the thesis has been made "temporarily unavailable" and were directed to the University Office of Communications.

Following the thesis' release by the Obama campaign to politico. Many students felt that the contents of the work could become a factor in the election, but they were unsure to what extent it would affect the outcome. Molly Alarcon '10, an Obama supporter, said she thought Michelle Obama's writing in college should not have any bearing on her husband's election, but her view was not shared by all students.

A conspiracy theory that explains everything and nothing simultaneously takes off among Trump fans. Co-writer Mark Salter talks about the themes of the latest memoir by the year-old Arizona senator, who has been diagnosed with brain cancer. Share Tweet Reddit Flipboard Email. This story was written by Esther Breger, The Daily Princetonian Michelle Obama's thesis was released to the public by Princeton University Tuesday after several days of media scrutiny over its availability and content.

What's in the thesis? Obama drew on her personal experiences as an example. The University's actions were met with varying reactions by students. Featured in Politics What is the QAnon conspiracy theory? A conspiracy theory that explains everything and nothing simultaneously takes off among Trump fans "The Restless Wave": Parting words from John McCain Co-writer Mark Salter talks about the themes of the latest memoir by the year-old Arizona senator, who has been diagnosed with brain cancer.

Follow CBS News icon icon icon icon icon icon. Tweets by CBS News. Latest From "60 Minutes" Aly Raisman speaks out about sexual abuse. The polo team that uses cloned horses.

The latest chain e-mail involves his wife. The e-mail looks at a research paper Michelle Obama wrote while a student at Princeton University 23 years ago. It takes a few actual sentences out of context, and fabricates a few quotes that don't exist in her work. Later the e-mail opines, "Michele sic Obama clearly has a chip on her shoulder. Not only does she see separate black and white societies in America, but she elevates black over white in her world.

But nowhere in the thesis does Michelle Obama write the words "crime and hatred" or that whites are "ineradicably racist. It also uses real quotations from the thesis, though a few are taken out of context. The thesis is available on the Internet; the politics news site Politico reported on it in February and posted a copy it had obtained from Princeton University. We downloaded a copy, which appears to be complete with no numbered pages missing.

We read it, but we did not find the phrases the e-mail describes. We took the additional step of scanning the document through optical character recognition software so we could search its text electronically. An automated search did not find the words "crime," "hatred," "hate," "ineradicably," or "racist" in the document. Every senior at Princeton writes a thesis or finishes an independent project. Obama wrote her thesis as part of a bachelor's degree in sociology and graduated with honors, according to Princeton University's Department of Sociology Web site.

Sociology uses scientific methods to study human group behavior. In Obama's thesis, she sought to quantify how the attitudes of black Princeton alumni changed after graduation in regard to race relations and social change. Obama was especially interested in the attitudes of Princeton alumni in regard to improving the lives of lower-income blacks.

To document the change in attitudes, Obama devised an question survey and mailed it to black alumni. Her thesis is a discussion of her methodology and an analysis of the results. It contains a limited amount of personal opinion in the introduction, including the sentence the e-mail cites. Here is a fuller excerpt:. My experiences at Princeton have made me far more aware of my 'Blackness' than ever before. I have found that at Princeton no matter how liberal and open-minded some of my White professors and classmates try to be toward me, I sometimes feel like a visitor on campus; as if I really don't belong.

Regardless of the circumstances under which I interact with Whites at Princeton, it often seems as if, to them, I will always be Black first and a student second. Obama's perceptions have been supported at least in part by recent reporting: Obama's freshmen-year roommate tried to change rooms upon arrival at Princeton because her mother was horrified that Obama was black , according to a report in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

For example, as I enter my final year at Princeton, I find myself striving for many of the same goals as my White classmates — acceptance to a prestigious graduate or professional school or a high paying position in a successful corporation.

Thus, my goals after Princeton are not as clear as before. The rest of the thesis goes on to discuss survey methodology such as independent variables, dependent variables and sample size, then summarizes the survey response. Obama found that black alumni identified with the black community the most during their years at Princeton, moreso than either before or afterward, and she discusses a number of possible reasons for the survey results.

Join the conversation!

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

A Politico post by Jeffrey Ressner on Michelle Obama’s Princeton thesis, entitled “Princeton-Educated Blacks and the Black Community,” can be found here.. Politico is currently hosting it in a 4-part PDF. A complete PDF of the thesis can be downloaded here.. The next post will be a word-searchable version, from a quick optical scan, minus the statistical data near the end of the thesis.

Privacy FAQs

Princeton, New Jersey, (c) Michelle LaVaughn Robinson, I hereby declare that I am the sole author of this thesis. I authorize Princeton University to lend this thesis to oth-.

About Our Ads

Michelle Obama's senior year thesis at Princeton University, obtained from the campaign by Politico, shows a document written by a young woman grappling with a society in which a black Princeton. Michelle Obama's thesis was released to the public by Princeton University Tuesday after several days of media scrutiny over its availability and content.

Cookie Info

An email has been circulating that access to Michelle Obama’s senior thesis at Princeton University is restricted until November 5, — the day after the election. Princeton—Educated Blacks and the Black Community by Michelle LaVaughn Robinson A thesis presented to Princeton University in partial Iment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor 0£ Arts in Department of Sociology Princeton, New Jersey, (c) Michelle LaVaughn Robinson, I hereby declare that I am the sole author of this thesis.