Hostname: page-component-7d684dbfc8-7nm9g Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2023-09-24T14:11:21.329Z Has data issue: false Feature Flags: { "corePageComponentGetUserInfoFromSharedSession": true, "coreDisableEcommerce": false, "coreDisableSocialShare": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForArticlePurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForBookPurchase": false, "coreDisableEcommerceForElementPurchase": false, "coreUseNewShare": true, "useRatesEcommerce": true } hasContentIssue false

Racial Threat and Partisan Identification

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 September 2013

Micheal W. Giles
Emory University
Kaenan Hertz
Emory University
Rights & Permissions [Opens in a new window]


Core share and HTML view are not possible as this article does not have html content. However, as you have access to this content, a full PDF is available via the ‘Save PDF’ action button.

Over the past three decades, as the Democratic party in the South has come to depend more heavily on black voters for its success, it has experienced a decline among white adherents. Power theory views relationships between groups as a function of their competitive positions in political, economic, and social arenas. In contexts where the threat posed by a minority group is high, the dominant group's response is predicted to be more hostile than in contexts where that threat is low. A pooled time series analysis of voter registration data for Louisiana parishes for 1975–90 provides support for the operation of the threat mechanism. Higher black concentrations are associated with declines in the percentage of white registered voters who are Democrats and an increase in the percentage who are Republicans. Consistent with the expectations of power theory, this relationship is conditioned by the social status of the parish.

Copyright © American Political Science Association 1994


Beck, Paul Allen. 1977. “Partisan Dealignment in the Postwar South.” American Political Science Review 71:477–96.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Black, Earl. 1973. “The Militant Segregationist Vote in the Post Brown South: A Comparative Study.” Social Science Quarterly 54:6684.Google Scholar
Black, Earl, and Black, Merle. 1987. Politics and Society in the South. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
Blalock, Hubert M. 1967. Toward a Theory of Minority-Group Relations. New York: John Wiley and Sons.Google Scholar
Blumer, Herbert. 1958. “Race Prejudice as a Sense of Group Position?Pacific Sociological Review 1:37.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brodsky, David M. 1988. “Partisan Change: An Overview of a Continuing Debate.” In The South's New Politics, ed. Swansbrough, Robert H. and Brodsky, David M.. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press.Google Scholar
Carmines, Edward G., and Stimson, James A.. 1989. Issue Evolution: Race and the Transformation of American Politics. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
Corzine, Jay, Creech, James, and Corzine, Lin. 1983. “Black Concentration and Lynchings in the South: Testing Blalock's Power-Threat Hypothesis.” Social Forces 61:774–96.Google Scholar
Fossett, Mark A., and Jill Kiecolt, K.. 1989. “The Relative Size of Minority Populations and White Racial Attitudes.” Social Science Quarterly 70:820–35.Google Scholar
Giles, Micheal W., and Buckner, Melanie. 1993. “David Duke and Black Threat: An Old Hypothesis Revisited.” The Journal of Politics 55:702–13.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Giles, Micheal W., Cataldo, Everett, and Gatlin, Douglas. 1975. “White Flight and Percent Black: The Tipping Point Re-examined.” Social Science Quarterly 56:8592.Google Scholar
Giles, Micheal W., and Evans, Arthur. 1985. “External Threat, Perceived Threat, and Group Identity.” Social Science Quarterly 66:5066.Google Scholar
Giles, Micheal W., and Evans, Arthur. 1986. “The Power Approach to Intergroup Hostility.” Journal of Conflict Resolution 30:469–86.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Herring, Mary. 1990. “Legislative Responsiveness to Black Constituents in Three Deep South States.” Journal of Politics 52:740–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Huckfeldt, R. Robert, and Kohfeld, Carol W.. 1989. Race and the Decline of Class in American Politics. Chicago: University of Illinois Press.Google Scholar
Kmenta, Jan. 1971. Elements of Econometrics. New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Kmenta, Jan. 1986. Elements of Econometrics. 2d ed.New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Labovitz, Sanford, and Hagedorn, Robert. 1975. “A Structural-Behavioral Theory of Intergroup Antagonism.” Social Forces 53:444–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lamis, Alexander P. 1988. The Two-Party South. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
Maddala, G. S. 1977. Econometrics. New York: McGraw Hill.Google Scholar
Parent, Wayne. 1988. “The Rise and Stall of Republican Ascendency in Louisiana Politics.” In The South's New Politics, ed. Swansbrough, Robert H. and Brodsky, David M.. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press.Google Scholar
Pettigrew, Thomas F. 1957. “Demographic Correlates of Border-State Desegregation.American Sociological Review 22:683–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Schermerhorn, R. A. 1956. “Power as a Primary Concept in the Study of Minorities.” Social Forces 35:5356.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Stanley, Harold W. 1987. Voter Mobilization and the Politics of Race: The South and Universal Suffrage, 1952–1984. New York: Praeger.Google Scholar
Stanley, Harold W., and Castle, David S.. 1988. “Partisan Changes in the South: Making Sense of Scholarly Dissonance.” In The South's New Politics, ed. Swansbrough, Robert H. and Brodsky, David M.. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press.Google Scholar
Stimson, James A. 1985. “Regression in Space and Time: A Statistical Essay.” American Journal of Political Science 29:914–47.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Sundquist, James L. 1983. Dynamics of the Party System: Alignment and Realignment of Political Parties in the United States. Rev. Washington: Brookings Institution.Google Scholar
Whitby, Kenny. 1987. “Measuring Congressional Responsiveness to the Policy Interests of Black Constituents.” Social Science Quarterly 68:367–77.Google Scholar
Whitby, Kenny, and Gilliam, Franklin D.. 1991. “A Longitudinal Analysis of Competing Explanations for the Transformation of Southern Congressional Politics.” Journal of Politics 53:504–18.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wilson, William J. 1973. Power, Racism, and Privilege: Race Relations in Theoretical and Sociohistorical Perspectives. New York: Macmillan.Google Scholar
Wright, Gerald C. 1977. “Contextual Models of Electoral Behavior: The Southern Wallace Vote.” American Political Science Review 71:497508.CrossRefGoogle Scholar