ERIC Number: ED250423
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Aug
Reference Count: 0
The Relationship between Racial Identity Attitudes and Socioeconomic Status.
Carter, Robert T.; Helms, Janet E.
To determine whether racial identity attitudes could be predicted from socioeconomic variables, 174 Black college students were asked to respond to items on the Racial Identity Attitude Scale and to complete a personal data sheet. Results indicated that racial identity attitudes and socioeconomic status appear to represent separate constructs. Socioeconomic variables did not predict attitudes. Thus, it may be important to consider the subjects' individualized attitudes toward themselves and their ascribed racial group. Researchers cannot assume automatically that being Black means that one identifies with Blacks or Black culture, or that being Black and middle or upper class means that one does not identify with Black socioeconomic status. Socioeconomic status may indicate social position and economic resources, both of which are based on external criteria, but racial identity attitudes appear to be related more to internal functioning than to external forces. Thus, the present study supports Cross's argument that personal identity and reference group identity may be different. In other words, it may be possible for a Black person to feel good about him- or herself and have mixed or negative feelings toward his or her racial group. (Author/KH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Racial Identity Attitude Scale
Note: Paper presented at the American Psychological Association Convention (Toronto, Ontario, Canada, August 1984).