Monday, October 6, 2008

Good article about racism in the NY Times today

Hey everyone, I just wanted to direct you all to a great little piece by Nicholas Kristof that's in today's New York Times. It addresses some of the same issues surrounding racism that I discussed in my recent post in relation to the election. It cites a few more interesting papers that deal with racism in the hiring process for black applicants. The crux of his argument is that, in general, we have implicit racial biases that affect our behavior and cognition even though we may not be aware of their existence. Psychologists have termed the unconscious racial discrimination that occurs as a result of these biases "aversive racism" and research has shown that this type of racism has not declined significantly over time, despite the fact that conscious prejudice (or outright admitted racism) has in fact declined significantly. In other words, evidence shows that people still maintain unconscious racist beliefs yet do believe that they are racist... a phenomenon that Kristof dubs "Racism Without Racists".

If the earlier link doesn't work, the article can be found here:

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