New study looks at speech patterns of Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and others. Race and gender influence the way politicians speak, which is not always to their advantage. Camelia Suleiman from Florida International University and Daniel O'Connell from Georgetown University in the US have come to this conclusion as a result of their findings, published online in Psycholinguistic
Suleiman and O'Connell compared the language of male and female, and black and white politicians to determine whether ethnicity and gender play a role in the way they speak. They studied transcripts of interviews between Larry King on CNN TV and Madeleine Albright, Bill Clinton, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Colin Powell and Condoleeza Rice. Specifically, they looked at how the politicians' speech was constructed: the number of syllables spoken, the use of interjections, interruptions, self-referent 'I', non-standard English such as 'gonna', y ' know, and laughter.