Racial and Ethnic Identity Essay

Racial and Ethnic Identity Essay

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The African, Mexican, and Native persons have all interacted with the Dominant American culture in some magnitude; consequently altering each different group’s racial and ethnic Identity. Throughout the semester, I have discovered that in much literature writers had an ideal perspective on their own identity as well as the identity that the dominant culture influenced them to have. While doing some research I wanted to see what would be a transitional time frame for a person to be un-conditioned of many negative symbolic meanings in regard to minorities and immigrants. My research has shown that there was a hierarchical scheme where an individual can monitor his/her identity progression from one level to the next. This “Developmental Model of Ethnic and Racial Identity” was created during the black consciousness movement. It involves discovering true ethnic Identity and racial identity.

Ethnic identity is defined as defining oneself the personal and social meaning of belonging to one particular ethnic group (Cushner, McClelland and Safford). Racial identity is similar in theory, but only differs in physical appearance. This model describes the five stage process of moving from a low racial consciousness, through a period of active examination of what it means to be black, [Mexican, or Native] and internalize a positive identity (Cushner, McClelland and Safford). These five stages are pre-encounter, encounter, immersion-emersion, immersion, and internalization. This model was then applies to all minority and immigrant groups in the country.

The first stage of pre-encounter, people have self-hatred about their culture and self. They believe in most stereotypes that are shown through the ...


... middle of paper ...


...ed by the writers of all of these poems and novels, and it represents the struggle of many people who have assimilated to the dominant culture or who are trying. I will continue to study this concept and extend my research even further to understand the entire minority and immigrant experience.

Works Cited


Anaya, Rudolfo. BLESS ME ULTIMA. New York, Boston: Grand Central Publishing, 1994. Print.

Cushner, Kenneth, Averil McClelland and Philip Safford. Human Diversity in Education. 7th. New York: McGraw Hill, 2012. Print.

Hughes, Langston. Literature 4332: American Minority Literature. n.d. Web. 3 May 2013.

Hurston, Zora Neale. Literature 4332: American Minority Literature. n.d. Web. 4 May 2013.

Morrison, Toni. The Bluest Eye. New York: The Penguin Group, 1970. Print.

Zitkala-Sa. Literature: 4332 American Minority Literature. n.d. Web. 5 May 2013.

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