Advertisement

Journal of Urban Health

, Volume 91, Issue 4, pp 690–706 | Cite as

Neighborhood Stressors, Mastery, and Depressive Symptoms: Racial and Ethnic Differences in an Ecological Model of the Stress Process in Chicago

  • Megan E. GilsterEmail author
Article

Abstract

Neighborhood stressors are associated with depressive symptoms and are more likely to be experienced in poor, non-White neighborhoods. Neighborhood stress process theory suggests that neighborhood stressor affect mental health through personal coping resources, such as mastery. Mastery is thought to be both a pathway and a buffer of the ill effects of neighborhood stressors. This research examines the neighborhood stress process with a focus on racial and ethnic differences in the relationship between neighborhood stressors, mastery, and depressive symptoms in a multi-ethnic sample of Chicago residents. Findings suggest race-specific effects on depressive symptoms. Mastery is found to be a pathway from neighborhood stressors to depressive symptoms but not a buffer against neighborhood stressors. Mastery is most beneficial to Whites and those living in low stress neighborhoods.

Keywords

Depressive symptoms Mental health Neighborhoods Social context Multilevel analysis Neighborhood stressors Mastery 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The Chicago Community Adult Health study was supported by funds from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (P50HD38986 and R01HD050467). The author was funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (T32HD049302). The author would like to thank Steph Robert, Jason Houle, Amy Butler as well as members of the Chicago Community Adult Health research group, especially Jeff Morenoff, Jim House, and Jennifer Ailshire, for comments on earlier versions of this manuscript.

References

  1. 1.
    Pearlin LI, Menaghan EG, Lieberman MA, Mullan JT. The stress process. J Health Soc Behav. 1981; 22(4): 337–356.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Aneshensel CS. Neighborhood as a social context of the stress process. In: Avison WR, Aneshensel CS, Schieman S, Wheaton B, eds. Advances in the conceptualization of the stress process: essays in honor of Leonard I. Pearlin. New York, NY: Springer; 2010: 35–52.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Kim D. Blues from the neighborhood? Neighborhood characteristics and depression. Epidemiol Rev. 2008; 30(1): 101–117.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Mair C, Diez Roux AV, Galea S. Are neighbourhood characteristics associated with depressive symptoms? A review of evidence. J Epidemiol Community Health. 2008; 62(11): 940–946.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Curry A, Latkin C, Davey-Rothwell M. Pathways to depression: the impact of neighborhood violent crime on inner-city residents in Baltimore, Maryland, USA. Soc Sci Med. 2008; 67(1): 23–30.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Hill NE, Herman-Stahl MA. Neighborhood safety and social involvement: associations with parenting behaviors and depressive symptoms among African American and euro-American mothers. J Fam Psychol. 2002; 16(2): 209–219.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Latkin CA, Curry AD. Stressful neighborhoods and depression: a prospective study of the impact of neighborhood disorder. J Health Soc Behav. 2003; 44(1): 34–44.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Ross CE, Mirowsky J. Neighborhood disorder, subjective alienation, and distress. J Health Soc Behav. 2009; 50(1): 49–64.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gary TL, Stark SA, LaVeist TA. Neighborhood characteristics and mental health among African Americans and whites living in a racially integrated urban community. Health Place. 2007; 13(2): 569–575.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    Raudenbush SW, Sampson RJ. Ecometrics: toward a science of assessing ecological settings, with application to the systematic social observation of neighborhoods. Sociol Methodol. 1999; 29(1): 1–41.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Echeverría S, Diez-Roux AV, Shea S, Borrell LN, Jackson S. Associations of neighborhood problems and neighborhood social cohesion with mental health and health behaviors: the multi-ethnic study of atherosclerosis. Health Place. 2008; 14(4): 853–865.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Mair C, Diez Roux AV, Morenoff JD. Neighborhood stressors and social support as predictors of depressive symptoms in the Chicago community adult health study. Health Place. 2010; 16(5): 811–819.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    Massey DS. Segregation and stratification: a biosocial perspective. Du Bois Rev Soc Sci Res Race. 2004; 1(01): 7–25.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Williams DR, Collins C. Racial residential segregation: a fundamental cause of racial disparities in health. Public Health Rep. 2001; 116: 404–418.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Williams DR, Yan Y, Jackson JS, Anderson NB. Racial differences in physical and mental health. J Health Psychol. 1997; 2(3): 335–351.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Williams DR. Racial Variations in Adult Health Status: Patterns, Paradoxes and Prospects. In Smelser N, Wilson WJ, Mitchell F, editors. America Becoming: Racial Trends and Their Consequences. Washington, D.C.: National Academy of Sciences Press; 2001. Vol. II, pp. 371–410.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    Vega WA, Sribney WM. Latino population demographics, risk factors, and depression: a case study of the Mexican American prevalence and services survey. In: Depression in Latinos. Vol 8. Springer US; 2008:1–24. 10.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Dunlop DD, Song J, Lyons JS, Manheim LM, Chang RW. Racial/Ethnic differences in rates of depression among preretirement adults. Am J Public Health. 2003; 93(11): 1945–1952.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    South SJ, Deane GD. Race and residential mobility: individual determinants and structural constraints. Soc Forces. 1993; 72(1): 147–167.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Wheaton B, Clarke P. Space meets time: integrating temporal and contextual influences on mental health in early adulthood. Am Sociol Rev. 2003; 68: 680–706.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. 21.
    Schieman S, Pearlin LI, Meersman SC. Neighborhood disadvantage and anger among older adults: social comparisons as effect modifiers. J Health Soc Behav. 2006; 47(2): 156–172.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Schieman S. Residential stability and the social impact of neighborhood disadvantage: a study of gender- and race-contingent effects. Soc Forces. 2005; 83(3): 1031–1064.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Pearlin LI, Schooler C. The structure of coping. J Health Soc Behav. 1978; 19(1): 2–21.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. 24.
    Watkins DC, Hudson DL, Howard Caldwell C, Siefert K, Jackson JS. Discrimination, mastery, and depressive symptoms among African American men. Res Soc Work Pract. 2011; 21(3): 269–277.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Keith VM, Lincoln KD, Taylor RJ, Jackson JS. Discriminatory experiences and depressive symptoms among African American women: do skin tone and mastery matter? Sex Roles. 2010; 62(1–2): 48–59.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. 26.
    Christie-Mizell CA, Erickson RJ. Mothers and mastery: the consequences of perceived neighborhood disorder. Soc Psychol Q. 2007; 70(4): 340–365.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Geis KJ, Ross CE. A new look at urban alienation: the effect of neighborhood disorder on perceived powerlessness. Soc Psychol Q. 1998; 61(3): 232–246.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Lincoln KD. Financial strain, negative interactions, and mastery: pathways to mental health among older African Americans. J Black Psychol. 2007; 33(4): 439–462.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Miller B, Rote SM, Keith VM. Coping with racial discrimination assessing the vulnerability of African Americans and the mediated moderation of psychosocial resources. Soc Mental Health. 2013; 3(2): 133–150.Google Scholar
  30. 30.
    Pudrovska T, Schieman S, Pearlin LI, Nguyen K. The sense of mastery as a mediator and moderator in the association between economic hardship and health in late life. J Aging Health. 2005; 17(5): 634–660.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. 31.
    Schieman S, Meersman SC. Neighborhood problems and health among older adults: received and donated social support and the sense of mastery as effect modifiers. J Gerontol Ser B Psychol Sci Soc Sci. 2004; 59(2): S89–S97.Google Scholar
  32. 32.
    Morenoff JD, Sampson RJ. Violent crime and the spatial dynamics of neighborhood transition: Chicago, 1970–1990. Soc Forces. 1997; 76(1): 31–64.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Sharkey P, Sampson RJ. Destination effects: residential mobility and trajectories of adolescent violence in a stratified metropolis. Criminology. 2010; 48(3): 639–681.PubMedCentralPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. 34.
    Sampson RJ, Raudenbush SW. Systematic social observation of public spaces: a new look at disorder in urban neighborhoods. Am J Sociol. 1999; 105(3): 603–651.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Radloff LS. The CES-D scale: a self-report depression scale for research in the general population. Appl Psychol Meas. 1977; 1(3): 385–401.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Mujahid MS, Diez Roux AV, Morenoff JD, Raghunathan T. Assessing the measurement properties of neighborhood scales: from psychometrics to ecometrics. Am J Epidemiol. 2007; 165(8): 858–867.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Karb RA. Neighborhood social and physical environments and health: examining sources of stress and support in neighborhoods and their relationship with self-rated health, cortisol, and obesity in Chicago. The University of Michigan; USA 2010.Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Raudenbush SW, Bryk AS, Congdon R. HLM 6 for windows [computer software]. Lincolnwood, IL: Scientific Software International, Inc; 2004.Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    StataCorp. Stata: Release 11. 2009;11.Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Pearlin LI. The stress process revisited. In: Handbook of the sociology of mental health. New York, NY: Springer; 1999:395–415.Google Scholar
  41. 41.
    Sampson RJ. Great American city: Chicago and the enduring neighborhood effect. Chicago: University of Chicago Press; 2012.Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Sampson RJ, Morenoff JD, Gannon-Rowley T. Assessing “neighborhood effects”: social processes and new directions in research. Annu Rev Sociol. 2002; 28: 443–478.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The New York Academy of Medicine 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Iowa, School of Social WorkIowa CityUSA

Personalised recommendations