Nuestra batalla interna: How Race Impacts Middle class Socioeconomic Status in the Latinx Community – UROP Spring Symposium 2021

Nuestra batalla interna: How Race Impacts Middle class Socioeconomic Status in the Latinx Community

Irene Lopez


Pronouns: she/her/hers

Research Mentor(s): Teresa Satterfield, Professor
Research Mentor School/College/Department: Romance Languages and Literatures, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts
Presentation Date: Thursday, April 22, 2021
Session: Session 4 (2pm-2:50pm)
Breakout Room: Room 11
Presenter: 3

Event Link


Studies demonstrating the link between race and socioeconomic (SES) status (Graham-Bailey et al., 2019; Rich, 2011) often fail to take into account numerous individual factors in people of color, such as self-identification, discrimination, and health. This study seeks to understand psychological and environmental factors that middle class Latinx adults face, and how such factors affect the individual’s self-perspective and social class. To study the question of how the Latinx community’s views of themselves affects self-perception within the society. We examine responses from N>300 Spanish-language surveys that were administered online to random US-based Latinx adults. To evaluate the proposed variables, we analyze survey participants’ responses on their own ethnicity. We also examine indications of self-identity rejection, by analyzing participants decision to the respond to Spanish survey prompts in Spanish or English, as a way of operationalizing the language to deduce any signs of viewing their language as a burden. We hypothesize that the Latinx respondent will see themselves as inferior to the racial majority in the United States. Hence, their perceptions of themselves will be reflected in how they respond to the survey questions about their culture and ethnicity, based on our adapted Spanish ethnic and racial identity (ERI) scale. Ultimately, our study predicts that respondents will demonstrate cultural and ethnic identity hesitation, lower perceptions of SES, and feelings of inferiority when compared to US Anglo counterparts. This study contributes to the larger research on race and SES by providing new information on the daily psychological and environmental factors which Latinx middle class families endure, as well as the questions these factors prompt.

Authors: Irene Lopez, Teresa Satterfield, Luis Mendez, Heidi Cano
Research Method: Survey Research

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