Crossing ethnic lines
Research and Analysis InterMedia Washington DC, USA
Research and Analysis of interethnic relations typically assumes that ethnic groups are coherent entities.
In many cases the intergroup perspective is prevalent and variation within ethnic groups and possible
crossings across groups are often neglected. This might lead to a more static view on interethnic relations
whereas relations are in fact more like processes and thus subject to change over time.
This paper will address some of these questions based on a longitudinal data analyses. Between 2001 and
2005 more than 10.000 German, Turkish and Resettler adolescents were surveyed to explore contacts,
prejudice and acculturation preferences as crucial aspects of interethnic relations. To allow for subgroup
differences that might reach across ethnic groups, life style clusters or social milieux were examined over time.
Initial results indicate that members of three social milieux of each ethnic group tend to reach out to members
of other ethnic groups. In contrast, a few social milieux seem to reject members of a different ethnic group.
On the whole the findings provide some evidence that interethnic relations are more differentiated than
expected and coalitions of the willing coexist next to tendencies of withdrawal and rejection. More detailed
empirical evidence is analyzed with regard to interpersonal contact, prejudice and social rejection, and