The proposed research is focused on the development, maintenance, and consequences of racial and ethnic [R/E] identity among a primarily African-American and European-American sample from a mid-Atlantic state, with continued analyses and a new data collection which will allow for the examination of R/E identity, related processes, and healthy development from early adolescence (approximately age 12) through early adulthood (approximately age 30). We propose a multi-year, mixed-methods research project that examines the personal and contextual meanings that (a) are associated with participants'categorical R/E group memberships, (b) form the basis for person-level R/E identities, (c) are associated with perceptions of racial discrimination, and (d) relate systematically to healthy development. The first major aim is to document the nature of R/E group memberships (defined by both individuals and social groups), the extent of psychological meanings attached to these group memberships (i.e., R/E identity), and the corresponding developmental pathways (defined by both R/E identity and indicators of healthy mental, physical, and social development). The second major aim is to examine how R/E identity structures and processes moderate the relations between race-based social stressors and optimal human development. The primary hypothesis we plan to test is that the effects of perceived racial discrimination on healthy development will vary systematically as a function of the content, structure, and processes of individuals'R/E identities (e.g., beliefs, feelings, and values about socially-constructed, group-membership categories). We also want to document empirically the extent to which adolescent psychological R/E identity development matters for continued R/E identity development during early adulthood and for healthy adult functioning.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Research Project (R01)
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Social Sciences and Population Studies Study Section (SSPS)
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Bures, Regina M
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University of Michigan Ann Arbor
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Ann Arbor
United States
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Adam, Emma K; Heissel, Jennifer A; Zeiders, Katharine H et al. (2015) Developmental histories of perceived racial discrimination and diurnal cortisol profiles in adulthood: A 20-year prospective study. Psychoneuroendocrinology 62:279-91
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