Colorism in the job selection process
Harrison, Matthew Scott
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In this era of affirmative action, racial discrimination is a widely studied topic by many researchers. A common negligence of these researchers is that they often ignore the subject of skin tone stratification. Instead, they perform an analysis of discrimination based upon treatment of Blacks and Whites (both as collective units), and thereby, overlook a prevalent issue that has long existed in western culture and has become a global phenomenon in all cultures where there is skin tone variation—colorism. This study examined the influence of colorism on job selection. More specifically, this research discovered a significant difference in job selection preference by differentiating Blacks based on their skin complexion. The findings suggest that skin tone plays a considerable role in the favorability of a Black applicant. Results indicate that skin color is so salient, that it is regarded more highly than one’s educational background and prior work experience upon consideration for recommendation or hiring for a job.