Ethnic Role Identity among Black and White College Students: An Interactionist Approach

[Read This Article/Report]

This article examines a structural symbolic interactionist approach to the process of ethnic identity formation among black and white college students. This approach, termed “identity theory,” considers an ethnic identity (like all identities) to be a portion of the self that contains shared understandings of what it means to be a member of a given ethnic group. Within the framework of identity theory, ethnic identification is hypothesized to be related to self-esteem, identity salience, identity commitment, and other structural characteristics.