Survey Paints Image of Black Women in America

The nationwide poll asks African-American women about their own views.

Posted: 01/24/2012 04:15 PM EST

The Washington Post and the Kaiser Family Foundation recently conducted a nationwide survey and interviewed more than 800 African-American women in the U.S. for a look into what Black women are experiencing when it comes to religion, relationships, careers and self-perception.

"Black women haven’t really defined themselves," author Sophia Nelson tells the Washington Post. "We were always defined as workhorses, strong. We carry the burdens, we carry the family. We don’t need. We don’t want."

Nearly three-quarters of African-American women believe that now is a great time to be a Black woman in America, but about the same amount also worry about being able to pay their bills. Eighty-five percent say they're satisfied with their lives, but one-fifth say they feel like they get less respect than other people. On the upside, Black women have a great view of themselves: 67 percent of Black women say they have high self-esteem compared to 43 percent of white women.

The results also show that:

Forty percent of Black women say getting married is very important, compared with 55 percent of white women, 67 percent would be willing to marry into a different race, and 63 percent of Black women say it's acceptable to have a child without being married (about the same percentage as white women). Nearly 60 percent worry about providing their children with a good education.


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