When Change Doesn’t Matter: Racial Identity (In)consistency and Adolescent Well-being

Posted in Articles, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2015-03-26 14:54Z by Steven

When Change Doesn’t Matter: Racial Identity (In)consistency and Adolescent Well-being

Sociology of Race & Ethnicity
Volume 1, Number 2 (April 2015)
pages 270-286
DOI: 10.1177/2332649214552730

Rory Kramer, Assistant Professor
Department of Sociology and Criminology
Villanova University, Villanova, Pennsylvania

Ruth Burke
Department of Sociology
University of Pennsylvania

Camille Z. Charles, Professor of Sociology
University of Pennsylvania

Most theories of racial self-identity argue that a racially inconsistent identity indicates emotional distress and internal turmoil. However, empirical research on racial identity and consistency indicates that racial inconsistency is more common than previously believed, and some argue that it can be a positive adaptation for individuals. Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Adolescent Health, we explore the degree to which racial identity inconsistency is associated with emotional, social, and academic outcomes. We find that racial inconsistency is not associated with negative outcomes for individuals and, via access to white privilege, may be associated with benefits for some individuals. We conclude by discussing the implications of our findings for theories of racial identity.

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , ,

How Ferguson could be America’s future

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2014-08-26 02:12Z by Steven

How Ferguson could be America’s future

Cable News Network (CNN)

John Blake

(CNN) — The protests in Ferguson, Missouri, have been described as a mirror into contemporary America, but they are also something else: A crystal ball.

Look past the headlines — the debates over race and police militarization that have surfaced after the killing of an unarmed black youth by a white police officer — and one can glimpse America’s future, some historians and political scientists say.

No one is talking about an impending race war or a police state, but something more subtle. Unless Americans re-examine some assumptions they’ve made about themselves, they argue, Ferguson could be the future.

Assumption No. 1: Tiger Woods is going to save us

It’s called the “browning of America.” Google the phrase and you’ll get 18 million hits. By 2050, most of the nation’s citizens are expected to be people of color, according to the Pew Research Center.

Dig beneath the Google links and one can detect an emerging assumption: Racial flashpoints like Ferguson will fade in the future because no single race will be dominant. You could call it the Tiger Woods effect. The New American will claim multiple racial origins like Woods, the pro golfer. Demographic change will accomplish what a thousand national conversations on race could never do: lessen the sting of racial conflict.

A dramatic increase in interracial marriages will change the racial landscape as more people cross racial and ethnic lines to marry. But that change won’t be a cure-all, says Rory Kramer, a sociology and criminology professor at Villanova University in Pennsylvania.

He says racial progress is not inevitable with the browning of America.

“I don’t want to deny the optimism,” Kramer says. “I deny the assumption that it will happen without effort.”…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Fluid or Fixed: Which is Better? Multiracial Identity Consistency and Emotional Well-Being in Adolescence

Posted in Identity Development/Psychology, Live Events, New Media, Social Science, United States on 2010-08-14 17:44Z by Steven

Fluid or Fixed: Which is Better? Multiracial Identity Consistency and Emotional Well-Being in Adolescence

American Sociological Association
Annual Meeting 2010
Regular Session: Multi-Racial Classification/Identity
Atlanta Marriott Marquis
Monday, 2010-08-16, 16:30-18:10 EDT (Local Time)

Session Organizer: Rebecca C. King-O’Riain, Senior Lecturer of Sociology
National University of Ireland-Maynooth 

Presider: Carolyn A. Liebler, Assistant Professor of Sociology
University of Minnesota

Ruth H. Burke
University of Pennsylvania

Rory Kramer
University of Pennsylvania

Camille Zubrinsky Charles, Professor of Sociology and the Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor in the Social Sciences; Director, The Center for Africana Studies
University of Pennsylvania

Traditional theories of multiracial identity propose that multiracial individuals go through a period of “crisis” in which their racial and ethnic identity is fluid and inconsistent. These theories argue that such fluidity leads to emotional stress. Recent research has shown that this fluidity is more related to socioeconomic status and background and that racial consistency is not a necessary or ideal goal for multiracial individuals. At the same time, others have shown how to measure consistency of identity in survey research such as Add Health but have not yet studied whether or not consistency is related to negative emotional outcomes. In this paper, we expand those measures to include Hispanic ethnic identity in our measure of consistency and test whether or not inconsistency of racial and/or ethnic identity is related to depression. We find that the older, more linear theories of multiraciality are not correct and that fluid identities are not significantly related to higher scores on a standard measure of depression. The paper concludes by discussing how these findings highlight the importance of producing new theories of racial identity that consider fluidity and multidimensionality of racial identity as a natural and neutral part of an individual’s identity.

For more information, click here.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,