Date of Award

Spring 5-1-2014

Degree Type

Honors College Thesis


Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

First Advisor

Robert Press


Colorism is an occurrence in racial groups where members are discriminated against based on the shade of their skin. This study looks at colorism and skin tone bias as it pertains to the African American community. I specifically address three areas of life in which I feel colorism plays a major role for African Americans. Education, occupation, and relationships are all areas where colorism and skin tone bias have the potential to cause damage to the individual’s self-perception of worth and efficacy. This study found that in several scenarios, light-skinned respondents reported feeling as though they received preferential treatment over their dark-skinned counterparts.

Available for download on Tuesday, March 02, 2219