Generally, the meanings of race and ethnicity have their starting points from sociological and biological variables. The physical appearance of a someone, for example, eye shading, skin shading, jaw/bone structure and additionally hair shading depict race while ethnicity is related to the social elements, for example, culture, convictions, heritage, and nationality. Race is a term that depicts a group of individuals with comparative characteristics. I think race is resolved by physical characteristics, for example, type of color skin, language they speak, eye shape they have, or even things, for example, blood classifications. Individuals in general are portrayed as "humankind". Race is an undeniable theme in American culture. Despite the fact
Race, in the common understanding, draws upon differences not only of skin color and physical attributes but also of language, nationality, and religion. Race categories are often used as ethnic intensifiers, with the aim of justifying the exploitation of one group by another. Race is an idea that has become so fixed in American society that there is no room for open-mindedness when challenging the idea of racial categories. Over the years there has been a drastic change with the way the term "race" is used by scientists. Essentially, there is a major difference between the biological and sociological views of race.
People have different physical characteristics, for example skin, hair or eye color, tall or short stature, and other ways evolution has adapted humans to be able to live and thrive in different areas of the world. For hundreds of years race has been a factor in how people have categorized each other. Race is defined as “a group of persons related by a common descent or heredity, characterized by supposedly distinctive and universal characteristics” (“Race”). Race is part of what makes us unique as individuals, however it has not been scientifically identified in the physical make up of what is known as the human genome. There is no scientific proof that gives race the ability to be a social construct, yet it has been a large part of American history and society in history and still has a presence today. Race is a reality.
The human species is made up of those who dared to immigrate to the rest of the world from Africa. Most of human ancestry dealt with migration by venturing into the unknown and eventually establishing a culture that begins to create social mores that the population begins to believe as fundamentally theirs and what their country represents. The majority always seems to have a mob rule in cultural etiquette. By comparing the concepts of ethnicity, nation and nationality I will cover the similarities and the differences that make up each of the given terms for a culture. In a culture, groups that may not think that they form a circle for their existence will be discussed in my review of “Focus on Globalization: The Gray and the Brown” (Kottak,
Researchers, among them Michael Banton have argued the need to distinguish between race and ethnicity. In Banton’s view, race refers to the categorization of people while ethnicity has to do with group identification.
Broadly speaking, race is seen or is assumed to be a biologically driven set of boundaries that group and categorize people according to phenotypical similarities (e.g. skin color) (Pinderhughes, 1989; Root, 1998). The categorical classification of race can be traced back to the 16th century Linnaen system of human “races” where each race was believed to be of a distinct type or subspecies that included separate gene pools (Omi & Winant, 1994; Spickard, 1992; Smedley & Smedley, 2005). Race in the U.S. initially began as a general categorizing term, interchangeable with such terms as “type” or “species”. Over time, race began to morph into a term specifically referring to groups of people living in North America (i.e. European “Whites”, Native American “Indians”, and African “Negroes”). Race represented a new way to illustrate human difference as well as a way to socially structure society (Smedley & Smedley, 2005).
Using the class book Racial and Ethnic Groups by Richard T. Shaefer we can define minority groups. Shaefer states “A minority group is a subordinate group whose members have significantly less control or power over their own lives than do the members of a dominant or majority group”(4). From this definition we can say that subordinate and minority are the same thing, they just have interchangeable names. Later, Shaefer talks about the five basic properties of a minority or subordinate group which are: unequal treatment, distinguishing physical or cultural traits, involuntary membership, awareness of subordination, and in group marriages (5). To get a little bit into the depth of these, the author provides us with simple explanations for each.
Firstly, they used immigration to show the impact it has on race & ethnic identification. The changes in immigration laws have helped to move the demographics of more than one category. The influx of educated immigrants and the skillsets that they bring with them has helped to push the typology of categories for the groups that they belong to, it has also helped to move the relative positon of those groups in the social order. As a shift in the economic and educational achievements of immigrants are pushing the framework of each category, it is leading to an increase in the heterogeneity between and within the racial & ethnic groups. Changes in immigration is also leading to a change in the social relations within and between groups, as it is leading to increased interracial interactions in schools, workplaces and households. This is shifting the boundaries of this category as well. Secondly, the authors use multiracialism or hybridity, which is the ability of individuals to fit into multiple categories. It is seen that over time individuals are identifying themselves with multiple racial & ethnic categories, this is due to increased similarities between shared attributed by different groups. Increased interaction between groups has led to the identification of these similarities, and therefore has not only shifted the typology of categories but also the
There is a specific meaning to race and how its role impacts society and shapes the social structures. Race is a concept that “symbolizes social conflicts and interests by referring to different types of human bodies” (Omi & Winant 55). In other words, Omi and Winant get down to the crux of the issue and assert that race is just an illusion. Race is merely seen as an ideological construct that is often unstable and consisting of decentered social meanings. This form of social construction attempts to explain the physical attributes of an individual but it is constantly transformed by political struggles. The rules of classifying race and of identity are embedded into society’s perception. Therefore, race becomes a common function for comprehending, explaining, and acting in the
The concept of race is an ancient construction through which a single society models all of mankind around the ideal man. This idealism evolved from prejudice and ignorance of another culture and the inability to view another human as equal. The establishment of race and racism can be seen from as early as the Middle Ages through the present. The social construction of racism and the feeling of superiority to people of other ethnicities, have been distinguishably present in European societies as well as America throughout the last several centuries.