Colorism Against Legal Immigrants to the United States

American Behavioral Scientist, Forthcoming

Vanderbilt Law Research Paper No. 18-54

24 Pages Posted: 26 Nov 2018

See all articles by Joni Hersch

Joni Hersch

Vanderbilt University - Law School; IZA Institute of Labor Economics; Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management; Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics

Date Written: July 13, 2018

Abstract

Data from the 2003 wave of the New Immigrant Survey established that immigrants to the US with darker skin color experienced a substantial pay penalty that is not explained by extensive individual and job characteristics. These same immigrants were re-interviewed approximately four years later. With additional time to assimilate to the US labor market, the disadvantage of darker skin color may have declined or even disappeared. The current analysis shows that the penalty for darker color instead increased over this period from a 16 percent lightest-to-darkest penalty for a 25 percent disparity.

Keywords: colorism, immigrant, light skin, dark skin

JEL Classification: J15, J61, J71, K38

Suggested Citation

Hersch, Joni, Colorism Against Legal Immigrants to the United States (July 13, 2018). American Behavioral Scientist, Forthcoming; Vanderbilt Law Research Paper No. 18-54. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3276303

Joni Hersch (Contact Author)

Vanderbilt University - Law School ( email )

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615-343-7717 (Phone)
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HOME PAGE: http://law.vanderbilt.edu/go/phdlawecon

IZA Institute of Labor Economics ( email )

P.O. Box 7240
Bonn, D-53072
Germany

Vanderbilt University - Owen Graduate School of Management

401 21st Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203
United States

Vanderbilt University - College of Arts and Science - Department of Economics

Box 1819 Station B
Nashville, TN 37235
United States

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