Meeting in the Middle: The Role of Mutual Biracial Friends in Cross-Race Friendships
Social network analysis was used to examine the role of having a mutual biracial friend on cross-race friendship nominations among monoracial sixth-grade students (Mage = 10.56 years) in two racially diverse middle schools (n = 385; n = 351). Monoracial youth were most likely to choose same-race peers as friends but more likely to choose biracial than different-race peers as friends, suggesting that racial homophily may operate in an incremental way to influence friendships. Monoracial different-race youth were also more likely to be friends if they had a mutual biracial friend. The findings shed light on the unique role that biracial youth play in diverse friendship networks. Implications for including biracial youth in studies of cross-race friendship are discussed.
Echols, Leslie and Graham, Sandra, "Meeting in the Middle: The Role of Mutual Biracial Friends in Cross-Race Friendships" (2020). College of Health and Human Services. 637.