Do You Have A Racial Preference?

Posted by Nerissa Jawanda & filed under Life, Sex & Relationships.

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A clever new video by BuzzFeedYellow, focusing on racial preferences and dating, was recently released online. It gives a quick breakdown of multiple studies that have been conducted in the last few years, and reveals some very interesting data on racial preferences and biases that relate to dating.

I was intrigued by the video’s compilation of facts and statistics, which present information on varying inclinations from race to race. The video also explains which races are most responded to on dating sites, and by whom. Although the scope of the articles referenced in the video seems quite comprehensive, one study that was not mentioned (which I believe encompasses recent phenomena related to racial preferences and dating very well) is Racial Preferences In Dating, conducted at Columbia University.

The study finds that if the U.S. was colour-blind to race, 44% of individuals would be in interracial marriages—but the current figure is only 4%. Speed dating events for students were used to uncover whose preferences were driving this discrepancy, and the trials revealed, overwhelmingly, that women have a much stronger preference to same-race dating than men. This finding was thought-provoking for me; first, because I have never considered the notion that men and women have different levels of willingness in dating outside of their race, and secondly, because through interactions with friends and acquaintances, I have never noticed men being more “racially adventurous” when it comes to dating preferences or attitudes.

Although many studies about dating preferences are conducted every year, often with a myriad of findings, it does make me wonder about dating preferences in Vancouver, and what a similar study conducted locally would reveal. The city itself has been deemed by Statistics Canada as having the highest number of cross-cultural couples of any Canadian city, while British Columbia as a whole was found to have the highest proportion of interracial couples in Canada.

With interracial relationships becoming quite normative in Vancouver, there is a curious question of how this manifests into new or changing ideas and opinions on interracial dating within the city.

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