Scholars have grappled with how religion in the United States shapes attitudes toward racial inequality, often by focusing on racial inequality as out-group disadvantage. The current study extends this research by moving beyond racial inequality as out-group disadvantage to examine how religious conservatism and sanctification of social justice (i.e., attributing spiritual or religious significance to working for social justice) are associated with attitudes toward racial in-group advantage: white privilege. Using canonical correlation analysis with 475 white Catholic and Protestant students, results showed religious beliefs and white privilege attitudes were connected in two ways: (1) sanctification of social justice was positively associated with a dimension defined by greater willingness to confront white privilege and greater white privilege remorse and awareness and (2) religious conservatism was negatively associated with a dimension defined by greater awareness of white privilege. This shows how religion may facilitate or inhibit awareness and action related to white privilege.
- religious conservatism
- white privilege attitudes
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science