How White Is Your Neighborhood?

Photographer Eric Fischer's color-coded maps of racial segregation are captivating, particularly once you find your own neighborhood. A look at his work follows after the jump, courtesy of Fast Company's Cliff Kuang.

Recently, cartographer Bill Rankin produced an astounding map of Chicago, which managed to show the city's areas of racial integration.

Eric Fischer saw those maps, and took it upon himself to create similar ones for the top 40 cities in the United States. Fisher used a straight forward method borrowed from Rankin: Using U.S. Census data from 2000, he created a map where one dot equals 25 people. The dots are then color-coded based on race: White is pink; Black is blue; Hispanic is orange, and Asian is green. [New York is pictured above.]

The results for various cities are fascinating: Just like every city is different, every city is integrated (or segregated) in different ways.

Washington, D.C., for example, has a stark east/west divide between white and black:

How White Is Your Neighborhood?

Detroit, meanwhile, is marked by the infamous Eight Mile beltway, which serves a precise boundary for the city's black and white populations. Integration is almost non existent:

How White Is Your Neighborhood?

However, other cities present better pictures of racial integration. The San Francisco Bay, for example. While San Francisco proper is very, very white, the outlying bay communities such as Oakland are quite integrated — perhaps partly because no one minority totally dominates a single area:

How White Is Your Neighborhood?

That's not the case with New York, however: There are vast areas of extreme racial concentration. But the sheer size of those areas means that the boundary areas because intensely rich areas of cross-cultural ferment:

How White Is Your Neighborhood?

L.A., meanwhile, is sort of the opposite. Because no part of the city is particularly dense, you get blended neighborhoods which are at times larger than the racially homogeneous ones:

How White Is Your Neighborhood?

Meanwhile, here's what San Antonio looks like — a city which demographics often point to as the future of the post-race Southwest, where whites and Hispanics live together without boundaries. While you can see there's a predominance of Hispanics near the city center, you can also see that Hispanics are completely evenly integrated throughout the rest of the city — there's really no such thing as a rich, whites-only enclave (the large version in particular bears this out):

How White Is Your Neighborhood?


How White Is Your Neighborhood?Republished with permission from FastCompany.com. Authored by Cliff Kuang. Photos via Eric Fischer/Flickr.