ERIC Number: ED054994
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1970-Feb
Reference Count: 0
Social Distance and Race Attitudes: A Study of the White Population of Princeton, Maine and the Indian Population of Indian Township, Maine.
Little, Craig B.
The essentially descriptive study of these two racially and culturally distinct populations started with Robert E. Park's conception of social distance as the degree of understanding and intimacy which characterizes personal and social relations. The social distance phenomenon was broken down into three levels of analysis: perceived socio-economic status, attitudes of perference for association, and frequency and intimacy of interaction between members of groups. Based on historical background and contemporary intergroup relations theory, six hypotheses were presented to be tested. Two probability samples of twenty-five respondents each were selected. Similar interviews employing both attitude measurement techniques based on the conceptualization of social distance and questions requiring more qualitative responses were administered. Participant observations were also compiled. Although statistical associations were somewhat low, the results generally indicated that among the whites sampled racial characteristics (visible physical differences) were the most salient cues to social distance attitudes expressed. Frequency and intimacy of contact were most highly associated with Indian social distance attitudes. These findings led to a discussion of cultural and socio-economic factors which differentiate the white and Indian populations studied. The conclusion was that relations between whites and Indians are stalemated at a stage of accommodation in terms of Park's race relations cycle. (Author)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: New Hampshire Univ., Durham.
Identifiers: Maine, French Canadians; Park (Robert E)