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Racial and Ethnic Relations History of RACE Scholars suspect the word Race is of Semitic origin coming from a word that translations of the bible label as “race”, as in the “race of Abraham, but is often translated as “seed” or “generation”. Others trace the origin to a Czech word raz, meaning artery or blood; others to the Latin generatio, the Basque arraca or arraze, referring to a male stud animal. Some to the Spanish ras, which is of Arabic translation meaning “head” or origin; in all cases it signifies biological belonging of descent, blood or relationship. RACE • Race: a category of people who are defined as similar because of a number of physical characteristics. As long ago as 1781, German physiologist Johann Blumenbach realized the ignorant shortcomings of grouping humans into such categories. He stated that, “one variety of mankind does so sensibly pass into the other, that you cannot mark out the limits between them”, modern science supports this. Sociology seeks to explain how people base their reactions on the physical characteristics of others in society. Definitions of RACE • Geneticists define race by calculating gene frequencies among selected groups • Legal definitions have often been employed where there was an attempt to separate and apply different treatments to members of certain groups : not to long ago Georgia state law stated the following: The term “white person” shall include only persons of the white or Caucasian race, who have no ascertainable trace of either Negro, African, West Indian, Asiatic Indian, Mongolian, Japanese, or Chinese blood in their veins. No person, any of whose ancestors [was] … a colored person or person of color, shall be deemed to be a white person. (in some states , a person was labeled as black if they were calculated as greater than 1/32 black.) Definitions of RACE The official social definition of race states: if a person presents himself or herself as a member of a certain race and others respond to that person as a member of that race, it makes little sense to say that he or she is not a member of that race. RACE • Historically, race was broken down into (3) different categories: 1. Caucasoids 2. Mongoloids 3. Negroids • This system is useless to sociology. • There are no “pure” biological races. Ethnicity • Ethnic Group: has a distinct cultural tradition that its own members identify with and that may or may not be recognized by others. Many ethnic groups form subcultures. They often possess:1. Internal loyalty and adherence to basic customs 2. Distinctive mores and folkways; customs of dress 3. Moral codes, value systems, types of recreation 4. A devotion to a; monarch, religion, lang., territory 5. A strong feeling of assoc. b/c of cultural traditions 6. Occasionally belong to own political unit or may aspire to, or in today’s world: Arabs, French Canadians, Flemish, Scots, Jews, and Pennsylvania Dutch often are the part of larger units Concept of Minorities • Minority Group: do not think of the term minority as meaning a group small in number, rather use it as an implication that a group receives differential treatment and exclusion from full social participation by the dominant group in society. The proper sociological definition we will use for minority is: a group of people who, because of physical or cultural characteristics, are singled out from others in society for differential and unequal treatment, and who therefore regard themselves as objects of collective discrimination. Concept of Minorities a group of people who, because of physical or cultural characteristics, are singled out from others in society for differential and unequal treatment, and who therefore regard themselves as objects of collective discrimination. …Aside from this racial and ethnic definition there are other groups in society that sociologists feel can be considered minorities such as… women, homosexuals, adolescents, the aged, handicapped, the radical right or left, even intellectuals National Map Where the Minority Majority Already Exists Racial and Ethnic Categories in the United States, 2000 (Continued on next two slides) Table (cont.) Table (cont.) Measuring Prejudice The Social Distance Scale 1. 2. 3. Student opinion shows a trend toward greater social acceptance. People see fewer differences among various minorities. The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, might have reduced social acceptance of Arabs and Muslims. Figure 14.1 Bogardus Social Distance Research (Detail on next slide) The social distance scale is a good way to measure prejudice. Part (a) illustrates the complete social distance scale, from least social distance at the far left to greatest social distance at the far right. Part (b) shows the mean (average) social distance score received by each category of people in 2001. Part (c) presents the overall mean score (the average of the scores received by all racial and ethnic categories) in specific years. These scores have fallen from 2.14 in 1925 to 1.44 in 2001, showing that students express less social distance toward minorities today than they did in the past. Part (d) shows the range of averages, the difference between the highest and lowest scores in given years (in 2001, for instance, it was 0.87, the difference between the high score of 1.94 for Arabs and the low score of 1.07 for Americans). This figure has also become smaller since 1925, indicating that today’s students tend to see fewer differences between various categories of people. Source: Parrillo & Donoghue (2005). Figure 14.1 Detail Problems in Race and Ethnic Relations • “being down on something you are not up on” • Literally, prejudice means a “prejudgment.” Therefore since we could be prejudiced against anything… Prejudice: as an irrationally based negative, or occasionally positive, attitude toward certain groups and their members. Problems in Race and Ethnic Relations What causes prejudice? 1. 2. 3. 4. It is shared, and draws those who hold it together. Promotes a sense of “we-ness” and provides social identity for some. When two or more groups are competing for the same resources it makes it easier to view your competitors as less than human or unworthy. Prejudice (perhaps) allows us to project onto others those parts of ourselves we do not like and try to avoid It is the necessary ingredient of discrimination; therefore discrimination could not exist without it Problems in Race and Ethnic Relations All negative forms of prejudice involve stereotypes. a stereotype: an oversimplified, exaggerated or unfavorable generalization about a group of people. ex: all Irish are drunks, all Polish are stupid etc. when this reaches the societal level… a self-fulfilling prophecy can be constructed in a society when the dominant group thinks that a stereotype is true. ex: All poor people are stupid and lazy therefore why bother educating them. Problems in Race and Ethnic Relations … Prejudice is a subjective feeling, whereas discrimination is an overt action. Discrimination: refers to differential treatment, usually treatment, usually unequal and injurious, accorded to individuals who are assumed to belong to a particular category or group. Racism: is discrimination that is vented specifically on the race of another and/or another/different group. Definition: the belief that one’s race or ethnic group is naturally superior to other races or ethnic Merton’s Patterns of Prejudice and Discrimination Yes NO Discrimination Yes Prejudice NO Institutional Prejudice and Discrimination 1. Legal discrimination: upheld by the law. ex: Jim Crow laws in the deep south determined separate-but-equal facilities for blacks and whites 2. Institutionalized discrimination: because of long-held beliefs and practices, minority groups are pushed to the bottom of the social structure Sources of Discrimination and Prejudice in Modern Society 1. Sociological: learned through the social environment. This environment includes accepted social norms and how they are learned—socialization. 2. Economic: b/c of the competition for scarce resources and rewards, the dominant group in society encourages competition between minority groups. Sources of Discrimination and Prejudice in Modern Society 3. Psychological: individual explanations for discrimination and prejudice. a. Personality characteristics: people with an authoritarian personality; conformist, string sense of authority, blame others. b. produced b/c of frustration and anger; defined as scapegoating. Scapegoating: practice of placing the blame for one’s troubles on an innocent individual or group. Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations -Contrary to common belief, when racial and ethnic groups interact there are not an infinite number variety of human experiences; rather there are a limited number of outcomes when racial and ethnic groups come into contact – The following (6) outcomes, though loose in definition and easily overlapped, are what sociologists have identified as typical outcomes. Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations • The following (6) concepts explain the continuum of how minority groups are viewed and treated by the larger society. (“the American melting pot”) 1. Assimilation: the process whereby groups with different cultures come to have a common culture. • not in terms of dress or food b/values, attitudes, sentiments etc. • there is never a 50/50 assimilation b/rather one culture usually retains more and integrates less • Think! Native Americans socially and legally have had almost (100) years to assimilate but have not. Why? Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations 2. Pluralism: the development and coexistence of • • • • separate racial and ethnic group identities within a society. (“Salad-Bowl culture”) Pluralism is a reaction against assimilation and the melting pot idea Theorizes that individual minority lifestyles are a legitimate and desirable way of participating with society Also theorizes the implication of hostility to existing inequalities in the status and treatment of minority groups Switzerland may be the best international icon of pluralism; Swiss= German, French, and Italian Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations 3. Subjugation: the subordination of one group and • • • the assumption of a position of authority, power, and the domination by the other. Individuals from subordinate groups may in time accept and rationalize their social positions when a racial or ethnic group is placed in an inferior position its people are often eliminated as competitors American attitudes towards Native Americans: The logic of events demands the absorption of the Indians into our national life, not as Indians, but as American citizens…The Indians must conform to “the white’s man’s way,” peaceably if they will, forcibly if they must… this civilization must not be the best possible, but it is the best the Indians can get. They cannot escape it, and must either conform to it or be crushed by it. (Thomas Jefferson Morgan, President Benjamin Harrison’s commissioner of Indian affairs) Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations 4. Segregation: a form of subjugation, refers to the act, process, or state of being set apart. Encompasses policies that physically separate minority groups from the dominant group. 1. de jure segregation: based on laws 2. de facto segregation: based on informal norms • Segregation is most often negative, b/ can be positive as in Amish communities or Chinatown in major cities • Use of the word ghetto reserved by minorities living in the innercity comes from the word to describe the segregated quarters of European cities which housed European Jews • Native Americans often chose segregation rather than assimilation or annihilation National Map 14.2 Land Controlled by Native Americans, 1790 to Today In 1790, Native Americans controlled three-fourths of the land (blue-shaded areas) that eventually became the United States. Today, Native Americans control 314 reservations, scattered across the United States, that account for just 2 percent of the country’s land area. How would you characterize these locations? Source: Copyright (c) 1998 by The New York Times Co. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved. Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations 5. Expulsion: the process of forcing a group to leave the territory in which it resides. • As Germans did under Hitler (starting in 1933) for the Jews • 1933 Germany was home to some 500,000 Jews by 1940 before the “final solution” only 220,000 remained Forced Migration: the relocation of a group through direct action • The U.S. government practiced this policy on Native Americans in the 19th century; that is native Americans were forcibly removed or killed, once put on reservations they were then subjected to ways of “civilization” Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations 6. Annihilation: the deliberate extermination of a racial or ethnic group. In recent years it has been referred to as genocide coined to describe the crimes committed by the Nazis during WWII. • • • annihilation is the denial of the right to live to a group of people as homicide is to an individual non-purposeful: arriving in the Americas Europeans brought smallpox all but wiping out the Incas, Aztecs, and millions of Native Americans purposeful: Europeans deliberately exterminated natives living on the island of Tasmania in the 250 years after the island was discovered in 1642 - the largest systematic extermination was committed by the nazis during WWII, killing 11 million including 6 million Jews -the large scale extermination aimed at Jews slaughtered 60% of Jews and Europe and 36% of the world’s Jewish pop. Patterns of Racial and Ethnic Relations On December 11th, 1946, the General Assembly of the U.N. passed the following resolution on genocide: Any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious groups as such: (a) Killing members of the group; (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group • In recent times dominant groups have combined population transfer with extermination in a practice called ethnic cleansing. -ethnic Africans in the Sudan, Ethnic Albanians in Kosovo Racial and Ethnic Immigration to the United States Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free; The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!