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Black + White = Black

Black + White = Black Historically, the principle of hypodescent specified that individuals with one Black and one White parent should be considered Black. Two experiments examined whether categorizations of racially ambiguous targets reflect this principle. Participants studied ambiguous target faces accompanied by profiles that either did or did not identify the targets as having multiracial backgrounds (biological, cultural, or both biological and cultural). Participants then completed a speeded dualcategorization task requiring Black/not Black and White/not White judgments (Experiments 1 and 2) and deliberate categorization tasks requiring participants to describe the races (Experiment 2) of target faces. When a target was known to have mixed-race ancestry, participants were more likely to rapidly categorize the target as Black (and not White); however, the same cues also increased deliberate categorizations of the targets as “multiracial.” These findings suggest that hypodescent still characterizes the automatic racial categorizations of many perceivers, although more complex racial identities may be acknowledged upon more thoughtful reflection. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Psychological Science SAGE

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References (15)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© 2008 Association for Psychological Science
ISSN
0956-7976
eISSN
1467-9280
DOI
10.1111/j.1467-9280.2008.02185.x
pmid
19000204
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Historically, the principle of hypodescent specified that individuals with one Black and one White parent should be considered Black. Two experiments examined whether categorizations of racially ambiguous targets reflect this principle. Participants studied ambiguous target faces accompanied by profiles that either did or did not identify the targets as having multiracial backgrounds (biological, cultural, or both biological and cultural). Participants then completed a speeded dualcategorization task requiring Black/not Black and White/not White judgments (Experiments 1 and 2) and deliberate categorization tasks requiring participants to describe the races (Experiment 2) of target faces. When a target was known to have mixed-race ancestry, participants were more likely to rapidly categorize the target as Black (and not White); however, the same cues also increased deliberate categorizations of the targets as “multiracial.” These findings suggest that hypodescent still characterizes the automatic racial categorizations of many perceivers, although more complex racial identities may be acknowledged upon more thoughtful reflection.

Journal

Psychological ScienceSAGE

Published: Oct 1, 2008

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