Behind the Mule
Race and Class in African-American Politics
Michael C. Dawson
Political scientists and social choice theorists often assume that economic diversification within a group produces divergent political beliefs and behaviors. Michael Dawson demonstrates, however, that the growth of a black middle class has left race as the dominant influence on African- American politics. Why have African Americans remained so united in most of their political attitudes? To account for this phenomenon, Dawson develops a new theory of group interests that emphasizes perceptions of "linked fates" and black economic subordination.
Michael C. Dawson is Associate Professor of Political Science at the University of Chicago.