Is race politics primarily about symbolic racism, principled conservatism, or group conflict? After almost three decades, this debate among some of our best scholars seems scarcely closer to resolution, yet the theoretical, empirical, and normative issues at stake remain enormous. All three parties to the debate falsely assume that the causal structure driving opinion about race policy is homogenous. I reorient and advance the debate by showing how a methodological shift to a data-driven taxonomy of subjects can elucidate how race politics really is complex. I use this taxonomy to run new analyses, and to explain and assess the seemingly contradictory results of previous contributions to the debate. Each of the major parties to the debate is partially right in their account of public opinion about race politics, but about independently identifiable sub-sets of subjects.
Political Behavior – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 10, 2008
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