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Can Exploring Schematic Heterogeneity in Attitude Data Help Adjudicate Debates about White Americans’ Racial Attitudes?

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Abstract:

Students of white Americans’ attitudes towards African-Americans have argued about the meanings of the former’s responses to attitude surveys, especially about whether certain responses are socially appropriate displacements of conventional racism or, instead, reflections of political, moral, or economic beliefs independent of racial attitudes. We argue that such attitudes cannot be assessed one at a time, but instead must be viewed as related to schemata or associational networks within which each element derives its meaning from other elements with which it is associated. We further argue that interpreting survey responses requires the analyst to make inferences about the network of attitudes within which they are embedded; that schematic heterogeneity is typical of survey populations; and that understanding racial attitudes requires a partitioning of respondent samples into subsets of schematically similar agents.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

cluster (111), attitud (91), respond (82), racial (81), respons (71), black (60), differ (59), 1 (51), percent (48), dimaggio (48), variabl (47), govern (46), shepherd (43), group (43), data (41), american (39), like (39), white (35), polit (34), 4 (30), one (30),

Author's Keywords:

racial attitudes, culture, cognition
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Association:
Name: American Sociological Association
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http://www.asanet.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p184816_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Shepherd, Hana. and DiMaggio, Paul. "Can Exploring Schematic Heterogeneity in Attitude Data Help Adjudicate Debates about White Americans’ Racial Attitudes?" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, TBA, New York, New York City, Aug 11, 2007 <Not Available>. 2013-12-15 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p184816_index.html>

APA Citation:

Shepherd, H. and DiMaggio, P. J. , 2007-08-11 "Can Exploring Schematic Heterogeneity in Attitude Data Help Adjudicate Debates about White Americans’ Racial Attitudes?" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, TBA, New York, New York City Online <PDF>. 2013-12-15 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p184816_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: Students of white Americans’ attitudes towards African-Americans have argued about the meanings of the former’s responses to attitude surveys, especially about whether certain responses are socially appropriate displacements of conventional racism or, instead, reflections of political, moral, or economic beliefs independent of racial attitudes. We argue that such attitudes cannot be assessed one at a time, but instead must be viewed as related to schemata or associational networks within which each element derives its meaning from other elements with which it is associated. We further argue that interpreting survey responses requires the analyst to make inferences about the network of attitudes within which they are embedded; that schematic heterogeneity is typical of survey populations; and that understanding racial attitudes requires a partitioning of respondent samples into subsets of schematically similar agents.

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