Immigration’s Racial Complexity

Posted in Articles, Book/Video Reviews, Census/Demographics, Identity Development/Psychology, Media Archive, Social Science, United States on 2010-09-22 22:49Z by Steven

Immigration’s Racial Complexity

The Washington Post
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Steven E. Levingston

Will today’s Latino and Asian immigrants become incorporated into American society like their European predecessors? Or will race remain a stumbling block to full assimilation? Jennifer Lee and Frank Bean explore these questions in their new book “The Diversity Paradox: Immigration and the Color Line in Twenty-First Century America,” recently released by the Russell Sage Foundation. What they discover is that second-generation Asians and Latinos are not as constrained by racial categories as are African-Americans. A key to the question may lie in the state of intermarriage.

By Jennifer Lee and Frank D. Bean

The United States is more racially diverse than ever before. New non-European immigrant groups such as Latinos and Asians made up only 5 and 1 percent of the nation’s population in 1970, but today, they account for 15 and 5 percent, respectively. According to Census projections, by 2050, they will soar to 30 and 9 percent.

Immigration alone, however, is only one factor contributing to the country’s new diversity. Interracial marriages, which increased from 1 percent in 1960 to 7 percent in 2008, are contributing to this growing diversity. According to a Pew Research Center study released June 3, 1 in 6 marriages in the U.S. is interracial.

Along with the growth in intermarriage is the rise in the number of Americans who chose to identify multiracially. Accounting for just 2.2 percent of the U.S. population in 2008, some analysts project that multiracial Americans will account for 1 in 5 Americans by 2050, and 1 in 3 by 2100. Such trends appear to portend a post-racial society where racial divides are disappearing. However, a closer look at racial group differences tells a bleaker story…

Read the entire article here.

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