ATLANTA, May 15 (UPI) — U.S. white children have an overwhelming white bias, while black children also have a white bias but not to the same degree, a CNN-commissioned study found.
Nearly 60 years after American schools were desegregated by the lawsuit Brown vs. Board of Education, CNN commissioned a pilot study on children’s racial beliefs, attitudes and preferences.
Margaret Beale Spencer, a child psychologist at the University of Chicago, designed the pilot study that asked 133 children ages 4-5 and 9-10 and from New York City and Georgia a series of questions about a color bar chart or colored cartoon characters that showed light to dark skin tones.
Spencer aimed to replicate the landmark Doll Test from the 1940s, which asked black children to choose between a white doll and a brown doll. The 1940s study found the children overwhelmingly preferred the white doll over the brown doll.
In the 2010 study, white children, responded with white bias — identifying the color of their own skin with positive attributes and darker skin with negative attributes.
As a whole, the black children had some bias toward whiteness, but far less than white children, Spencer said.
“All kids on the one hand are exposed to the stereotypes,” Spencer told CNN. “What’s really significant here is that white children are learning or maintaining those stereotypes much more strongly than the African-American children.
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