The Prevalence of Perceived Discrimination Among African American and Caribbean Black Youth

Eleanor K. Seaton, Cleopatra H. Caldwell, Robert M. Sellers, James S. Jackson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

296 Scopus citations


The present study examined ethnic, gender, and age differences in perceived discrimination and the association between perceived discrimination and psychological well-being in a nationally representative sample of Black adolescents. Data are from the National Survey of African Life (NSAL), which includes 810 African American and 360 Caribbean Black youth. Results indicate that the majority of Black youth perceived at least 1 discriminatory incident in the previous year. Adolescents at later stages of development perceived more discrimination than those at earlier stages, and African American and Caribbean Black males perceived more discrimination than their female counterparts. Perceptions of discrimination were positively linked to depressive symptoms and were negatively linked to self-esteem and life satisfaction, regardless of ethnicity. However, Caribbean Black youth appear to be more vulnerable when they perceive high levels of discrimination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1288-1297
Number of pages10
JournalDevelopmental psychology
Issue number5
StatePublished - Sep 2008
Externally publishedYes


  • African Americans
  • Caribbean Blacks
  • adolescents
  • perceived discrimination
  • psychological well-being

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Life-span and Life-course Studies


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