The role of aspirations in the exclusion of Peruvian indigenous children

by Laure Pasquier-Doumer

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This article by Laure Pasquier-Doumer features in the World Social Science Report 2016. Pasquier-Doumer highlights a particular mechanism which underlies the exclusion of indigenous people in Peru. More precisely, she analyses how aspirations contribute to the persistence of inequality between ethnic groups. Relying on the Young Lives dataset, she finds that indigenous children do not limit their aspirations when compared with non-indigenous children with the same socio-economic background. Findings suggest that they do not have internalized racial schemas about their opportunities. However, aspirations are a channel through which inequality persists between ethnic groups, exacerbating the effect of socioeconomic status on educational achievement. Indeed, socio-economic status predicts levels of aspiration, which in turn affects progress in language mastery.

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