Racial misidentification causes distress

Aug 17, 2006

University of Iowa sociologists suggest routine racial misidentification causes high levels of emotional distress and might lead to suicide.

Sociology Professors Lisa Troyer and Mary Campbell analyzed data collected between 1994 and 2002 for the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health.

They found that more than a third of the American Indian youth in the nationally representative sample were mislabeled by an observer as members of another racial group, while less than 5 percent of white, black and Asian participants in the study were identified incorrectly.

Among the American Indians in the study who were misidentified, 13 percent reported thinking about suicide, compared with only 6 percent of those who were identified correctly. Three percent of the misidentified young people had attempted suicide, while 1 percent who were identified correctly had done so.

This study is said to be the first to document empirical evidence of the stress associated with not being recognized as a member of the racial group with which one identifies.

Troyer and Campbell presented their study this week in Montreal, during the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Scientists discover an on/off switch for aging cells

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

A third of LGBT youth suffer mental disorders

Dec 01, 2010

One-third of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth have attempted suicide in their lifetime -- a prevalence comparable to urban, minority youth -- but a majority do not experience mental illness, according to a report ...

Fatal injuries increase in older Americans

Apr 05, 2010

The risk of dying from injuries is increasing for Americans ages 65 and older according to a new report from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health's Center for Injury Research and Policy. The report found significant ...

APA announces draft diagnostic criteria for DSM-5

Feb 10, 2010

The American Psychiatric Association today released the proposed draft diagnostic criteria for the fifth edition of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). The draft criteria represent content changes ...

Recommended for you

Scientists discover an on/off switch for aging cells

7 hours ago

(Medical Xpress)—Scientists at the Salk Institute have discovered an on-and-off "switch" in cells that may hold the key to healthy aging. This switch points to a way to encourage healthy cells to keep dividing ...

Sierra Leone faces criticism over Ebola shutdown

8 hours ago

Sierra Leone began the second day of a 72-hour nationwide shutdown aimed at containing the spread of the deadly Ebola virus on Saturday amid criticism that the action was a poorly planned publicity stunt.

Vitamin K antagonist plus clopidogrel feasible for PCI

21 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Vitamin K antagonists (VKA) combined with clopidogrel may be a better alternative to triple anticoagulant therapy in patients on long-term VKA undergoing percutaneous coronary intervention (PCI) ...

Electronic health records tied to shorter time in ER

21 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Length of emergency room stay for trauma patients is shorter with the use of electronic health records, according to a study published in the September issue of the Journal of Emergency Nursing.

User comments : 0