Browsing by Subject "ideal type"

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  • Kihlman, Rebecca (2003)
    The general purpose of this work was to qualitatively explore the racial experiences of young black/white biracial Finns living in the Helsinki metropolitan area. More specifically the focus was their racial identification(s). The following research questions guided this study: How do young white/black biracial Finns identify racially? Do they have multiple racial identifications? Do others challenge their racial identifications? The method of research was the in-depth thematic qualitative interview. The sample in this study consisted of six informants, three males and three females. At the time of interviewing, they ranged in age from 19-24 years. Initially, the interview data was analyzed cross-sectionally and holistically based on themes from the original interview schedule as well as emergent themes. For the data presentation, the data is analyzed in terms of three types of racial identification. Bo Eneroth's ideal types method of qualitative data analysis is used as an analytical tool to illustrate the themes central to biracial, black and white racial identifications. The themes used to explore the ideal types were as follows: simultaneity, exoticness and enlightening others (biracial); changing skin color, the stigma of skin color, distinguishing origin, and racism (black); and cultural capital and distance (white). Analysis of the data provided answers to the research questions. The results of this study show that the biracial informants have multiple racial identifications. They identify as white, biracial and black with varying degrees of commitment to the white and black groups. They meet with challenges or threats to their racial identifications and respond to these threats by employing strategies that reflect their level of commitment to relevant groups. Their white racial identifications are most frequently challenged by members of the white Finnish majority. These challenges imply threats to their Finnish authenticity because the dark-skinned Finn is an unknown concept in Finland.