The racial residential segregation of black single living alone households

Kris Marsh, John Iceland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


While many studies have examined the intersection of race and class with residential segregation and residential preferences, little is known about the role played by household composition in shaping residential patterns. This article focuses on the residential patterns of a particular kind of household: those consisting of persons single and living alone (SALA). We compare the residential segregation of black SALA households-an important subset of nonfamily households and a rapidly growing segment of the population-from white SALA households and from both white and black married-couple households. We examine how group and metropolitan characteristics influence segregation levels for these household types. Using data from the 2000 census, we find that black SALA households are less segregated from white SALA households than from white married-couple households. Multivariate analyses show that smaller income differences across SALA households account for these segregation patterns, indicating the importance of economic resources in influencing residential patterns. Nevertheless, race continues to play an important role, as black SALA household segregation from both kinds of white households is high in absolute terms and in relation to their segregation from black married-couple households.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)299-319
Number of pages21
JournalCity and Community
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2010

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Urban Studies


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