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Discrimination in Leisure and Work Experienced by a White Ethnic Minority Group

Monika Stodolska, Edgar L. Jackson


Previous research has shown that discrimination against racial and ethnic groups can affect their leisure choices and compromise benefits that would otherwise be realized if discrimination were absent. However, most studies have focused solely on the problems of racial minorities (Blacks, Hispanics, or Asians). The present multi-stage, multi-method study examines issues related to leisure and discrimination among white ethnic minority group: the Polish community in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The findings show that the pattern of discrimination experienced by this group differs from that of well-established racial minorities both in terms of the types of discriminatory treatment and the locations where such treatment takes place. In particular, white ethnic minorities tend to experience markedly less discrimination in leisure settings than in other locations. The low incidence of discrimination in leisure can be partly attributed to "ethnic enclosure" which serves to attenuate the potential for contact with members of other groups and therefore the occasions in which discrimination might be experienced. The study shows that there are important differences between ethnic and racial minorities and emphasizes the need to distinguish between race and ethnicity when conducting research of this kind.


Discrimination, ethnic minorities, leisure

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