When White Americans see “non-Whites” as a group: Belief in minority collusion and support for White identity politics

Eric D. Knowles, Linda R. Tropp, Mao Mogami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

White Americans may find diversity threatening in part because they construe non-White Americans as a coherent social and political force. We argue that this perception manifests in a belief that minority groups collude against White people and that White people should act as a political bloc to defend ingroup interests. In a 3-year longitudinal study, the belief in minority collusion and support for White identity politics increased significantly among a nationally representative sample of 2,635 White Americans. Compared to White Democrats, White Republicans more strongly endorsed minority collusion beliefs and White identity politics, and increased more in these beliefs over time. Essentialist perceptions of the White ingroup were associated with longitudinal increases in minority collusion beliefs, but not in support for White identity politics. Endorsement of minority collusion and support for White identity politics both predicted lower support for Black Lives Matter and greater support for the Alt-Right movement. Implications for race relations, stigma-based solidarity, and the psychology of partisanship and ideology are discussed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalGroup Processes and Intergroup Relations
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • demographic change
  • diversity
  • minority coalition
  • minority collusion
  • psychological essentialism
  • White identity politics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science

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