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From Dark to Light: Skin Color and Wages Among African-Americans

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Author Info

  • Arthur H. Goldsmith
  • Darrick Hamilton
  • William Darity, Jr

Abstract

This paper develops and tests a theory, referred to as "preference for whiteness," which predicts that the interracial (white-black) and intraracial wage gap widens as the skin shade of the black worker darkens. Using data drawn from the Multi City Study of Urban Inequality and the National Survey of Black Americans, we report evidence largely consistent with the theory. Moreover, we decompose the estimated interracial and intraracial wage gaps, and find that favorable treatment of lighter-skinned workers is a major source of interracial and intraracial wage differences as predicted by the theory.

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File URL: http://jhr.uwpress.org/cgi/reprint/XLII/4/701
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Journal of Human Resources.

Volume (Year): 42 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:42:y:2007:i4:p701-738

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Web page: http://jhr.uwpress.org/

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Green, Tiffany L. & Hamilton, Tod G., 2013. "Beyond black and white: Color and mortality in post-reconstruction era North Carolina," Explorations in Economic History, Elsevier, vol. 50(1), pages 148-159.
  2. Howard Bodenhorn, 2011. "Manumission in nineteenth-century Virginia," Cliometrica, Journal of Historical Economics and Econometric History, Association Française de Cliométrie (AFC), vol. 5(2), pages 145-164, June.
  3. Hamilton, Darrick & Goldsmith, Arthur H. & Darity Jr., William, 2009. "Shedding "light" on marriage: The influence of skin shade on marriage for black females," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 72(1), pages 30-50, October.
  4. Fairlie, Robert W., 2009. "Can the "one-drop rule" tell us anything about racial discrimination? New evidence from the multiple race question on the 2000 Census," Labour Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(4), pages 451-460, August.
  5. Howard Bodenhorn & Carolyn Moehling & Gregory N. Price, 2012. "Short Criminals: Stature and Crime in Early America," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 55(2), pages 393 - 419.
  6. Ronald Mincy & Shoshana Grossbard & Chien-Chung Huang, 2005. "An Economic Analysis of Co-Parenting Choices: Single Parent, Visiting Father, Cohabitation, Marriage," Labor and Demography 0505004, EconWPA.
  7. Andrew Leigh & Tirta Susilo, 2008. "Is Voting Skin-Deep? Estimating the Effect of Candidate Ballot Photographs on Election Outcomes," CEPR Discussion Papers 583, Centre for Economic Policy Research, Research School of Economics, Australian National University.
  8. Maria Eduarda Tannuri Pianto & Andrew Francis, 2011. "The Redistributive Efficacy Ofaffirmative Action: Exploring The Role Of Race And Socioeconomic Statusin College Admissions," Anais do XXXVIII Encontro Nacional de Economia [Proceedings of the 38th Brazilian Economics Meeting] 218, ANPEC - Associação Nacional dos Centros de Pósgraduação em Economia [Brazilian Association of Graduate Programs in Economics].
  9. Howard Bodenhorn & Christopher Ruebeck, 2007. "Colourism and African–american wealth: evidence from the nineteenth-century south," Journal of Population Economics, Springer, vol. 20(3), pages 599-620, July.
  10. Francis, Andrew M. & Tannuri-Pianto, Maria, 2012. "The redistributive equity of affirmative action: Exploring the role of race, socioeconomic status, and gender in college admissions," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 45-55.
  11. Kwabena Gyimah-Brempong & Gregory N. Price, 2006. "Crime and Punishment: And Skin Hue Too?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 246-250, May.
  12. Hersch, Joni, 2011. "Skin color, physical appearance, and perceived discriminatory treatment," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 40(5), pages 671-678.
  13. Alberto Davila & Marie T. Mora & Sue K. Stockly, 2011. "Does Mestizaje Matter in the US? Economic Stratification of Mexican Immigrants," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 101(3), pages 593-97, May.
  14. Linda Loury, 2006. "Schooling, Skin Tone, and Attractiveness: Beauty Makes Skin Seem Deep," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 0620, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
  15. Grossbard, Shoshana & Gimenez-Nadal, Jose Ignacio & Molina, José Alberto, 2010. "Racial Discrimination and Household Chores," IZA Discussion Papers 5345, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  16. Joni Hersch, 2006. "Skin-Tone Effects among African Americans: Perceptions and Reality," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 96(2), pages 251-255, May.
  17. Grossbard, Shoshana & Vernon, Victoria, 2014. "Common Law Marriage and Male/Female Convergence in Labor Supply and Time Use," IZA Discussion Papers 7937, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).

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