American Sociological Association

Double Minority Status and Neighborhoods: Examining the Primacy of Race in Black Immigrants’ Racial and Socioeconomic Segregation

Sociologists have long viewed spatial assimilation as a measure of minorities’ socioeconomic progress. While assimilation increases as socioeconomic status (SES) improves, blacks remain more highly segregated than any other race/ethnic group. I use the locational attainment model to determine whether black immigrants—like their U.S.‐born counterparts—are highly segregated. This paper broadens the segregation literature by determining: (1) black immigrant segregation patterns after controlling for individual‐level characteristics, (2) the extent to which segregation varies by location, and (3) if racial segregation has the same socioeconomic consequences for U.S.‐ and foreign‐born blacks. I find that black immigrants face high racial and socioeconomic segregation in mainly Caribbean settlement areas. However, black immigrants in all but two predominantly African settlement areas experience no segregation. Essentially, I find that there is a great deal of diversity in black immigrants’ segregation patterns stemming from differential treatment in the housing market based on African immigrants’ higher SES and/or African immigrants’ residential choices. Results in the two outlier African settlement areas (Minneapolis and Washington, D.C.) suggest that entry visa may play an important role in black segregation.


Rebbeca Tesfai





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