Research on ethnic-racial identity (ERI) and its development has increased exponentially over the past decade. In this paper we discuss five questions that the Lifespan ERI Study Group grappled with in our effort propose a lifespan model of ERI: (1) When does ERI development begin and end? (2) How do we account for age-dependent and contextually-initiated factors in ERI? (3) Should there be a reference point for healthy ERI, and if so, what is it? (4) How do the multiplicities of identity (intersectionality, multiracialism, whiteness) figure into our conceptualization of ERI? (5) How do we understand the role of ERI in pursuit of equity, diversity, and social justice? We note that these are persistent questions in ERI research, and thus our goal is to present our collective reckoning with these issues as well as our ponderings about why they persist. We conclude with recommendations forthe kinds of research questions, designs, and methods that developmental science, in particular, needs to pursue.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Social Psychology
- Developmental and Educational Psychology