How Black Americans See Discrimination

Taken altogether, these survey results aren’t terribly surprising: They’re backed up by the reams of data that show the extent to which African-Americans are far more likely to live in areas with concentrated poverty even when they are high earners, are more likely to go to segregated and underfunded schools, and more likely to be stopped by the police and searched once they are. Black folks are living objectively more difficult lives than similarly situated white folks.

But here is a sobering thought: What if the black respondents to the NPR survey, who almost unanimously assumed that anti-black discrimination was a given, were like the people in the Urban Institute study and actually underestimating the drag that discrimination exerts on their lives? As data becomes more accessible and granular, we can more easily see how race is often the only variable that explains disparate treatment. If these responses are how people feel about discrimination based largely on what they can glean from their own direct experiences and commiserating with relatives and neighbors, it’s not hard to imagine that the full picture is even less rosy than these data suggest at first glance.

– Gene Demby

More work like this

Pulp Fiction's Uncanny Origins
Kinohi Nishikawa, Eddie S. Glaude, Jr.
Toni Morrison Remembers
Toni Morrison
Race and Nation in the Age of Trump and Brexit
Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, Gary Younge
Future Perfect: Designer and Discarded Genomes
Ruha Benjamin

Upcoming Events

Bobby McFerrin, "CIRCLESONGS"
Sep 21, 2018 @ 7:30 pm
Domestic Violence: The Limits and Possibilities of a Concept
Oct 4, 2018 - Oct 5, 2018
i am my ancestors’ wildest dreams: contemporary cultures of black impossibility
Oct 18, 2018 - Oct 20, 2018
Amanda Seales Performs
Oct 19, 2018 @ 7:00 pm
Ta-Nehisi Coates in Conversation with Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor
Nov 28, 2018 @ 6:00 pm
Anita Hill Lecture
Apr 10, 2019 @ 4:30 pm