“Racism and immigration policies: the impact of the quality of democracy on the mediation role of threat perceptions”

By Alice Ramos, Cícero Pereira, Jorge Vala & Ana Louceiro. Here’s the abstract:

The recent dramatic events that immigrants and refugees have been facing while trying to reach Europe looking for a decent life are also a reflex of the prejudice and discrimination that they are subject. This paper aims to understand how is it possible that in formally democratic societies people that are perceived as belonging to a different race, religion or ethnic group, are still subject to prejudice and discrimination. Using data of 18 countries from the European Social Survey 7, our findings show that: 1) despite the anti;racist norm that characterises democratic societies, biological racist beliefs continue to generate explicit feelings of threat and the support for discriminatory policies; 2) the relationship between racists beliefs and discriminatory behaviours is mediated by perceptions of realistic and symbolic threat that function as legitimating factors of discrimination; 3) the mediation role of threat perceptions becomes progressively crucial as the quality of democracy increases, due to the salience of the anti;discrimination norm in higher quality democratic contexts.


And here’s the first draft of the paper.


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