Hypersegregation in U.S. metropolitan areas: black and Hispanic segregation along five dimensions

Demography. 1989 Aug;26(3):373-91.


Residential segregation has traditionally been measured by using the index of dissimilarity and, more recently, the P* exposure index. These indices, however, measure only two of five potential dimensions of segregation and, by themselves, understate the degree of black segregation in U.S. society. Compared with Hispanics, not only are blacks more segregated on any single dimension of residential segregation, they are also likely to be segregated on all five dimensions simultaneously, which never occurs for Hispanics. Moreover, in a significant subset of large urban areas, blacks experience extreme segregation on all dimensions, a pattern we call hypersegregation. This finding is upheld and reinforced by a multivariate analysis. We conclude that blacks occupy a unique and distinctly disadvantaged position in the U.S. urban environment.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Black or African American*
  • Cluster Analysis
  • Hispanic or Latino*
  • Humans
  • Models, Statistical
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Race Relations*
  • Residence Characteristics
  • Social Isolation*
  • United States
  • Urban Population*