Respect Equality

Most Black Americans find race central to their identity, study finds 

A new survey from the Pew Research Center found that 76 percent of adult Black Americans believe being Black is “extremely” or “very” important to how they view themselves. 
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Story at a glance

  • A new report from the Pew Research Center found that most Black Americans view race as being a major part of their identity.

  • The report comes about six months after the research center conducted an online survey of 3,912 Black Americans.

  • Non-Hispanic Black Americans who were 65 and older were the most likely to say that being Black was extremely or very important to their identity. 

Most Black Americans consider race to be central to their identity, according to a new survey from the Pew Research Center.  

Over three-fourths, 76 percent, of Black Americans said that being Black is either extremely important or very important to their identity, the survey found.  

Thursday’s report comes roughly six months after the Pew Research began its online survey in which 3,912 Black Americans responded. The survey is also the latest installment in a series of studies from the center on the diversity of Black Americans.  


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Out of the survey respondents, 54 percent said that being Black was extremely important to their identity while 22 percent said it was very important.  

That sentiment was even stronger among non-Hispanic Black Americans, the survey found, with 78 percent of those respondents reported that being Black is very or extremely important “to how they think about themselves.”  

Meanwhile, 57 percent of multiracial Black Americans and 58 percent of Hispanic Black Americans say that being Black is extremely or very important to their identity, according to the survey.  

Younger Black Americans, however, were less likely to say that being Black shaped their identity. Black adults 65 and older were the most likely to view race as important to their identity, with 83 percent of respondents in that age group expressing that being Black was very or extremely important to their identity.  

Meanwhile, only 63 percent of Black adults between the ages of 18 to 29 reported feeling the same way, the survey found.  


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