Tandaan ninyo kami: Filipino Americans’ experiences of racism and the legacy of colonial mentality during Covid-19


August 2023

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Colonial mentality, the unquestioned and automatic acceptance of anything American and the unquestioned and automatic rejection of anything Filipino, is a type of internalized racism distinct to Filipino Americans that considers the group’s unique colonial history. Amid the COVID-19 global pandemic, increased anti-Asian rhetoric has led to reports of increased racially motivated hate crimes against Asian Americans. The current study aimed to examine differences of endorsed colonial mentality between first-, 1.5-, and second-generation Filipino Americans, differences in perceived racist experiences between generations, and the extent to which dimensions of colonial mentality predict perceptions of racism. It was hypothesized that first-generation participants would report fewer incidents of racism both within the last year and within their lifetimes and that there would be no significant difference between 1.5- and second-generation participants. A total of 184 participants participated in this research study. It was also hypothesized that first-generation participants would have the highest endorsement of all dimensions of colonial mentality. Lastly, it was hypothesized that greater endorsement of colonial mentality would result in fewer reports of racism for all generation groups. Participants were recruited via social media and indigenous methods such as pakikipamuhay and pagtatanung-tanong. Findings indicated that first-generation participants reported fewer perceptions of racism compared to the other generations. Additionally, there was no significant difference between 1.5- and second-generation participants perceptions of racism. The only statistically significant difference in perceptions within both recent and lifetime timeframes existed between first- and second-generation participants. Findings also indicated that only differences in the dimensions of colonial mentality existed between first- and second-generation participants endorsement of colonial debt wherein the former endorsed much higher than the latter. Finally, colonial mentality was a significant predictor of perceptions of both lifetime and recent experiences of racism. Specifically, greater endorsement of internalized inferiority predicted more perceptions of racism and lesser endorsement of colonial debt predicted more perceptions of racism.



Psychology, Social, Sociology, Ethnic and Racial Studies