The Practices and Processes Shaping Racism in British Society

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The Practices and Processes Shaping Racism in British Society The concept of racism is a relatively modern term that made its appearance in the 18th century. The practices and processes that have helped shape racism in British society today must be looked at as a series of ideologies, that have been built into British institutions and organisations as a consequence of the historical contexts of colonialism and imperialism. However, ideas of race and differences between races are rooted even earlier than this, even as far back in history as the 16th century. Even though racism can operate on levels of both individual racism and institutional racism, it is the later that will be looked at in this essay together with the historical context of Colonialism, and the political ideologies in the form of the Immigration acts that have shaped and still shape racism in British society (Mason 1995). When looking at how institutional racism as an ideology is embedded, in society it is necessary to look at historical events that have given rise to racism in Britain. Even though migration to Britain has been occurring through out time immemorial, the notion of race and racism as terminology really only came into popular use as an ideology from around the 18th century (Ramdin 1987). The fifteenth century saw the great voyages of exploration by Columbus and the beginnings of the Portuguese slave trade followed by the British explorative activities of Sir Francis Drake and Hawkins, which led to the rise of mercantile trade that extended British links to Africa and North America during the 16th century. These explorations led to what is commonly called the triangular journey in which ships left British west coast ports like Liverpool and Brist... ... middle of paper ... .... (Mason 1995). Bibliography: Bibliography Mason D, (1995) Race and Ethnicity in Modern Britain, Oxford, Oxford University Press. Malik K (1996), The Meaning of Race, London, McMillan Press. Miles (1993), Racism After 'Race Relations' London, Routledge. Ramdin R, (1987) The Making of the Black Working Class in Britain, Aldershot, Gower. Saggar S, (1992) Contemporary Political Studies, Race and Politics in Britain, Hemel Hempstead, Simon and Schuster. Skellington R, Morris P and Gordon P, (1992), 'Race' in Britain Today, London, Sage. Solomos J and Back L, (1996) Racism and Society, London, McMillan Press. Solomos J, (1999), Social Research and the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry: Sociological Research Online, vol. 4, no. 1, available online from www.socresonline.org.uk/socresonline/4/lawrence/solomos.html> accessed 12th Dec 2001.

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