Science Daily, Aug. 11, 2013
Smart people are just as racist as their less intelligent peers — they’re just better at concealing their prejudice, according to a University of Michigan study.
"High-ability whites are less likely to report prejudiced attitudes and more likely to say they support racial integration in principle," said Geoffrey Wodtke, a doctoral candidate in sociology. "But they are no more likely than lower-ability whites to support open housing laws and are less likely to support school busing and affirmative action programs."
Wodtke will present his findings at the 108th Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association. The National Science Foundation and the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, part of the National Institutes of Health, supported his research.
He analyzed data on the racial attitudes of more than 20,000 white respondents from the nationally representative General Social Survey. He examined how their cognitive ability, as measured by a widely used test of verbal intelligence, was linked with their attitudes about African-Americans, and about different policies designed to redress racial segregation and discrimination.
Respondents were about 47 years old at the time of the interview, on average, and had completed 12.9 years of education. They correctly answered an average of about six of the 10 cognitive ability test questions.
Among Wodtke’s findings: