Minority Access to White Suburbs:

Abstract

What are the locational processes that underlie racial residential segregation? This study analyzes the residential patterns of non-Hispanic whites, blacks, Hispanics, and Asians in eleven suburban regions using a multilevel model of locational attainment: the racial composition of a person's place of residence is determined by the person's individual characteristics (e.g., socioeconomic status and cultural assimilation) and aggregate variables including his or her racial/ethnic group, characteristics of the region in which he or she lives, and average characteristics of the group in that region. With some exceptions, findings for individual effects are more consistent with assimilation theory for Hispanics and Asians and with racial stratification theory for blacks. Having controlled for individual effects, disparities with whites are greatest for blacks, and for all three minority groups they are greatest in regions with large minority populations. Residential segregation is one of the most enduring topics in the sociological literature on race and ethnicity (Massey & Denton 1993), but despite the decades-long effort devoted to its study, considerable uncertainty persists ove

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