Racial Discrimination, Coping Strategies, and Racial Identity Among Black Adolescents

Prior studies have shown that in the U.S., perceptions of racial discrimination are commonly linked to lower life satisfaction levels, decreased self-esteem, and enhanced depressive symptoms among African American adolescents.

This study examined general coping strategies as mediators of the relationship between perceived racial discrimination and depression, and used dimensions of racial identity as moderators to provide additional tests for moderated mediation.

Results suggest that the use of avoidant coping strategies may mediate or help to explain, in part, why perceptions of racial discrimination are associated with increased depression among African American youth. Results also suggest that the mediated relationship between racial discrimination and depressive symptoms through avoidant coping primarily occurs among African American adolescents who endorse what is known as an “oppressed minority” ideology.

Population of focus: African American adolescents

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Date: 2013

Reference: Seaton, E. K., Upton, R., Gilbert, A. and Volpe, V. (2013), A Moderated Mediation Model: Racial Discrimination, Coping Strategies, and Racial Identity Among Black Adolescents. Child Development. doi: 10.1111/cdev.12122