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ASB 202 week 13

by: Jordan R

ASB 202 week 13 ASB 202

Jordan R
GPA 3.6

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This is on the exam.
Imm & Ethnic Relations in US
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This 15 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jordan R on Sunday May 22, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ASB 202 at Arizona State University taught by Estrada in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 6 views.


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Date Created: 05/22/16
Race and Ethnicity in the U.S. Immigration has created various ethnic groups in the U.S. and therefore had a dramatic impact on its ethnic and race relations Before we can understand these ethnic groups of immigrant origin, we need to understand ethnic and race relations (specifically in U.S.) What Is Race? Race=biological differences between groups of people • Phenotype=external differences in physical appearance • Genotype=internal differences in terms of genetics/heredity ▪ In everyday life, race is usually perceived based on phenotype (visible external physical differences) U.S. Racial Categories White Black Asian Indian “Asian and Pacific Islander” “American Indian and Alaskan Native” People Who Don’t Fit Our Racial Categories Hispanics Asian Indians Arab Americans Bi-racial peoples Problems Defining Race by Phenotype (by physical appearance) Considerable racial intermixture has created a huge range of different phenotypes So instead of distinct phenotypes, the distribution of differences in physical appearance is a continuum ● Can’t draw clear lines between races based on physical appearance ● Racial classifications based on phenotype become arbitrary/culturally relative perceptions (different societies have different classifications) What about classifying people racially by genotype (internal differences in genetics/heredity)? Are there significant genetic/ heredity differences between races? ● Most ordinary people continue to confuse genotype with phenotype ▪ They see great differences in physical appearance between races and assume they must reflect significant differences in genotype (and thus in innate intelligence, ability, etc.) Problems Defining Race by Genotype (genetics/heredity) Biologists/geneticists/physical anthropologists have not found significant genetic differences between different populations (including races) • Total human genetic variation is very small (0.5%) • 85% of this human genetic variation is found within racial groups (e.g., among blacks) and only 7-8% of human genetic variation is found between racial groups (e.g., between blacks and whites) Actual genetic differences between races are tiny. There is no biological/ genetic basis for racial differences (can’t classify races by genotype) Why are genetic differences between races so tiny? ● Vast majority of human evolution took place in Africa ▪ Hominids began evolving in Africa 50 million years ago, and homo sapiens left Africa only 50,000 years ▪ Humans have been evolving separately outside of Africa for only 0.1% of our evolutionary history Tiny genetic differences between races are not large enough to produce differences in terms of innate intelligence or ability ● They have only created superficial differences in external phenotypic appearance (racial differences are truly only skin-deep) Problems Defining Race by Genotype (genetics, heredity) If genetic differences between races only determine physical appearance and not innate ability/intelligence, then why are some racial groups apparently much better at doing certain things than others? (isn’t it because of their biological differences?) Race as a Social Construction If races differ mainly in phenotype (superficial differences in appearance) and not genotype (innate intelligence, ability), why has race been so significant throughout human history and in the contemporary world? Race is important as a social reality, not as a biological reality Race is social construction=based on social perceptions people have of human physical differences and the cultural meanings/beliefs they attach to such differences • The social construction of race is culturally relative and varies from one society to another and has changed over history ▪ Different societies have different racial categories ▪ Even when societies use the same racial category, the range of phenotypes included under each category varies from one society to another ▪ Racial categories also change over time/history Race as a Social Construction Each racial category is associated with cultural meanings/beliefs about members of that racial group (Blacks are like this, Asians are like that, etc.) that vary from one society to another ● Certain races have often been socially perceived as superior, which has been used to justify social inequalities and exploitation of races perceived as inferior Racism=false belief in the innate inferiority of certain races because of their genetic/biological differences ● Racism has therefore been used to justify conquering, colonizing, enslaving, exterminating others as well as discrimination and socioeconomic inequalities Ethnicity Ethnic groups=people who share a common culture and racial descent/ ancestry that makes them different from other groups • Defined by culture (cultural differences) Race is a critical component of ethnicity • Ethnicity is primordial=your membership in an ethnic group is based on birth, is innate, and can’t be changed Ethnicity is situational=ethnic membership is not innate and unchangeable (people often negotiate/manipulate/even change their ethnic identity depending on social circumstances) So which is it? ● Depends on whether cultural or racial side of ethnicity emphasized ▪ Cultural aspect of ethnicity can be manipulated/changed to certain extent (more situational) ▪ Racial aspect of ethnicity cannot be manipulated/changed as easily (more primordial) Ethnic Minorities Ethnic minorities=ethnic groups that are numerically smaller than the majority ethnic group and usually face prejudice/discrimination The majority group is usually numerically superior (over 50%) and is the dominant power-holder ● Ethnic minorities can be culturally and/or racially different from majority ethnic group ▪ Although most ethnic minorities are seen as culturally different, they are not all seen as racially different Prejudice=negative attitudes and beliefs we have about other ethnic groups Discrimination=expression of prejudices in actual behavior through negative and unequal treatment of an ethnic group ● Personal/individual discrimination=negative/unequal treatment of ethnic group in daily behavior and interaction (informal) ● Institutional discrimination=when institutions treat an ethnic group negatively/ unequally by partly excluding them (formal) Ethnic Minorities Ethnic stereotypes=dominant images/beliefs about an ethnic group that are applied indiscriminately to its members • Can be both positive or negative (=prejudice) • Influence how we perceive and interact with ethnic minorities • Problematic (even if they are positive) because of the refusal to acknowledge individual differences (viewing all members of the ethnic group as the same) Ethnic Minorities Different types of ethnic minorities ● Ethnic minorities of immigrant origin/descent Indigenous minorities/aborigines=original inhabitants of a country • who become ethnic minorities when subsequent immigrants came and dominated the country Australian Aborigines Ainu from Japan Panethnic group=broader ethnic group that encompasses a number of similar/ related ethnic groups (Asian Americans, Latinos/Hispanics) Ethnic Hierarchies in the U.S. Ethnic hierarchy=ethnic groups aren’t equally positioned, but are hierarchically stratified by socioeconmic status and power U.S. ethnic hierarchies are racialized (whites at top and blacks at bottom and other ethnic groups positioned inbetween) ● Plenty of ethnic variation within hierarchy whites ● Plenty of socioeconomic mobility within hierarchy Asian Americans • Socioeconomic disparities between ethnic groups persist, but are improving Hispanics Why was this ethnic hierarchy created? Historical legacy of immigration (when immigrant groups came ● blacks to the U.S., they were inserted into a certain socioeconomic position in the hierarchy) • Immigrants and ethnic minorities that face more discrimination find it harder to move up the hierarchy Ch. 15


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