COVID-19 Research Series


The origination of the coronavirus in Wuhan, China has led to growing xenophobia in the United States, with many Americans blaming China, and Asians more generally, for “allowing” the coronavirus to escape into a worldwide pandemic. This study explores Americans’ perceptions of pandemic-related racism, and their resilience strategies in response to these perceptions. Using a nationally representative survey (n = 1,767) that oversampled Asian Americans, we found that Asian and non-Asian Americans were no different in terms of their self-reported quality of life; however, Asians did experience more negative emotions and were acutely more aware of pandemic-related racial harassment. These perceptions fueled a mediation effect: Compared to non-Asians, Asians who perceived the threat of online pandemic-related harassment were more likely to enact resilience responses, which were in turn associated with increased psychological wellbeing. 

Download a copy of the Racism and Resilience White Paper

© 2020 SMART Labs @ Wayne. Photos by Jake Mulka & Ryan Tong