Book

Gaining voice (2019)

the causes and consequences of Black representation in the American states

in: Oxford scholarship online

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Abstract

This text adopts a multifaceted approach to study of black state legislators across the country. Using the descriptive representation framework, multiple facets of black representation are studied. Black seat share is the primary facet considered, and it is measured as the proportion of seats held by blacks in the state legislature. The black representation ratio measures the black seat share relative to the black population share. Parity exists when blacks are represented in the state legislature at a rate that matches their population share. Legislative black caucuses are also studied in this work, representing the institutionalization of the black presence in state legislatures.