Minority on Minority Discrimination: Impact of Majority Social Norm Perception
Most of the research on prejudice has focused on majority discrimination of minority group members, but few have investigated minority to minority prejudice. This experiment studied minority group member discrimination against members of other minority groups when asked to perform activities with a group composed of either all racial majority (White) individuals, all racial minority individuals of the participant’s own race, or an equal mix of White and racial minority individuals. It was expected that participants would be less likely to evaluate another racial minority group member favorably when in the presence of a White group than in any of the other conditions (mixed group or racial minority group). However, no significant interaction was found between group composition and job applicant race with regards to competence measurements. Instead, there was an interaction between gender and group composition on the competency ratings as well as a correlation between gender and competence evaluation. The findings of this study could help explain the existence and occurrence of minority to minority discrimination; specifically, how the perception of social norms and the environment play a role in discrimination among minorities.