Race Differences in the Effect of Subjective Social Status on Hostility and Depressive Symptoms Among 9- to 11-Year-Old Children

Ivan E. Castro, Bryce Hruska, Brooks B. Gump

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Purpose: Research shows that subjective social status (SSS) is a salient determinant of health. However, there is little research on SSS-related group differences on psychosocial outcomes among children. The purpose of the current study was to determine if associations between psychosocial functioning and SSS in children varied as a function of racial groups. Methods: We used a series of regression models to examine associations between SSS and measures of hostility and depressive symptom severity in groups of Black and White children. All analyses controlled for objective markers of family- and neighborhood-level socioeconomic status. Participants included 291 school-age children in Syracuse, NY. Results: Among Black children, SSS was negatively associated with hostility scores, R2 = 0.10, F(6, 160) = 3.34, p = 0.006, but not depressive symptom severity. Conversely, among White children, SSS was negatively associated with depressive symptom severity, R2 = 0.18, F(6, 117) = 4.37, p = 0.001, but not hostility. Conclusion: These racial differences in SSS-associated psychosocial functioning could be explained by race-based differences in attributions of social mobility and socioeconomic inequalities. Findings provide support for investigating possible tailoring of behavioral interventions to assist children in developing high SSS or coping with low SSS.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020

Keywords

  • Depressive symptoms
  • Hostility
  • Psychosocial functioning
  • Subjective social status

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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