Behind The White Picket Fence Finds Diversity Is Not Enough

Ethnically and culturally diverse neighborhoods have long been seen as a key factor in enhancing racial equality in America. Many efforts have been made over the years to address residential segregation and the socio-economic stratification that it breeds. But Sarah Mayorga-Gallo, assistant professor of sociology at the University of Cincinnati, contends that diversity itself is not a cure-all.

In “Behind the White Picket Fence,” Mayorga-Gallo combines first-hand accounts, personal observations and deep ethnographic research to explore structural-level inequalities among ethnic groups within an ostensibly diverse and integrated neighborhood. What she reveals underscores the superficiality of many of our notions of diversity, illustrating how well-intentioned efforts to integrate communities often fail to challenge underlying socio-economic disparities.

A compelling examination of power and privilege, “Behind the White Picket Fence” challenges readers’ assumptions about race, diversity and how an increasingly multiethnic America can continue to live and thrive together.

Sarah Mayorga-Gallo is an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Cincinnati’s McMicken College of Arts and Sciences. She completed her Ph.D. in sociology at Duke University in 2012. Her research interests include racial and ethnic stratification, urban sociology, Latino/a migration and media representations. Her current research focuses on social interactions and relationships within multiethnic neighborhoods. “Behind the White Picket Fence” will be released in November by the University of North Carolina Press and is

available for preorder