Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Jane Berry


The present research focused on foster ing greater support for the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement by examining factors that predict support for the movement, and possible mechanisms implicated in this relationship. The BLM movement was founded in 2013 following the death of teenager Trayvon Martin, and reached a remarkable height of media attention in the summer of 2020, following the murder of George Floyd. Since then, support for BLM has fluctuated, becoming a highly politicized movem ent that has faced much public debate.

Our study focused on factors that predict support for BLM in the current politic al climate. We

collected data from 164 undergraduate students at the University of Richmond in the fall of 2023 and the spring of 2024 through a mixed-methods survey to investigate the relationship between self-reported political affiliation and support for BLM. In an effort to explain this relationship, this study hypothesized that participants' beliefs about the existence of racism would influence the relation ship between political affiliation and support for BLM. These beliefs were assessed by survey items measuring the state of race relations, systemic racism, white privilege, policing, equal opportunity to succeed, and anti-white racism. Results suggest that greater political liberalism, for both social and economic issues, predicted support for BLM, and that beliefs acknowledging racism partially mediated this relationship. These results shed light on how support for the BLM movement might advance.

Included in

Psychology Commons