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Assessing and Extending Colorblind Racism Theory Using National Survey Data

Assessing and Extending Colorblind Racism Theory Using National Survey Data Eduardo Bonilla-Silva’s work on colorblind racism has become a prominent theoretical framework for analyzing racial attitudes, ideologies, and discourses in the contemporary United States. However, the scholarship has yet to produce an empirically rigorous, quantitative assessment of colorblind racism to document the theory’s generalizability and assess it as a theory of racial attitudes. In this article, we build upon the rich body of qualitative research to develop a novel measurement model of colorblind racism using nationally representative survey data. We then use the model to estimate the impact of adherence to colorblind beliefs on support for affirmative action policies and awareness of structural disadvantage. Our findings indicate a good model fit, and that awareness of structural disadvantages acts as a mediator between colorblind racism and affirmative action support. We use our findings to develop colorblind racism theory, especially regarding structural disadvantage, both empirically and theoretically; we also consider the implications of these findings and colorblind theory more generally for the study of racial attitudes in the post-Trump era. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sociology of Race and Ethnicity SAGE

Assessing and Extending Colorblind Racism Theory Using National Survey Data

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© American Sociological Association 2022
ISSN
2332-6492
eISSN
2332-6506
DOI
10.1177/23326492221078304
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Eduardo Bonilla-Silva’s work on colorblind racism has become a prominent theoretical framework for analyzing racial attitudes, ideologies, and discourses in the contemporary United States. However, the scholarship has yet to produce an empirically rigorous, quantitative assessment of colorblind racism to document the theory’s generalizability and assess it as a theory of racial attitudes. In this article, we build upon the rich body of qualitative research to develop a novel measurement model of colorblind racism using nationally representative survey data. We then use the model to estimate the impact of adherence to colorblind beliefs on support for affirmative action policies and awareness of structural disadvantage. Our findings indicate a good model fit, and that awareness of structural disadvantages acts as a mediator between colorblind racism and affirmative action support. We use our findings to develop colorblind racism theory, especially regarding structural disadvantage, both empirically and theoretically; we also consider the implications of these findings and colorblind theory more generally for the study of racial attitudes in the post-Trump era.

Journal

Sociology of Race and EthnicitySAGE

Published: Apr 1, 2022

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