Race: The Power of Illusion v.2 Topics --> What was Thomas Jefferson's 'suspicion'? (1781) --> Religion + Wealth as common social distinctions --> Slavery: Identifiable (racialized) cheap labor source --> Slavery became equated with blackness (social status + race) --> How did 'ordinary' whites become complicit with thee white racial narrative? --> The distinction between 'unassimilable' blacks (emphasizing 'biological' race) v. 'civilizing' Indians (emphasizing culture) --> What happened with the Indian Removal Act (1830)? --> What is Manifest Destiny? --> What kind of role did science (i.e., Agassiz, Morton) play in conceptualizing race? --> What is the white man's burden? --> The emergence of white racial identity as American unity 1904 St. Louis World's Fair and its racial discourse Contemporary Conceptualization of Race --> "A race can be defined as a group of people who (1) are generally considered to be physically distinct in some way, such as skin color, hair texture, or facial features, from other groups and (2) are generally considered by themselves and/or others to be a distinct group." (Farley, 1995) The Four Ways Race Has Existed in our History --> (1) Race as a 'scientific' concept (black, white, yellow, etc): This concept has led to so-called scientific racism (biological characteristics are linked to behavioral characteristics) --> (2) Race is a socially constructed political concept: The basis of racial discrimination --> (3) Social category & identity (popular usage): This is how we use race in our everyday life. It might not be consistent with how the U.S. Census or sociologists define race. --> (4) 'Biological' race and genetics, DNA, etc.: different kinds of people based on medical science Racism --> Racism is the belief that certain groups of people are innately, biologically, socially, and morally superior to other groups, based upon what is attributed to be their racial composition. --> The assigning of attitudes, behaviors, and abilities to individuals or groups based on skin color; includes the institutional arrangements that privilege one group over another and the ideological apparatus that perpetuates and makes those arrangements possible. Individual Racism --> It involves individual hatred, racial prejudice, discrimination, and more importantly intention of the individual. --> Racism stems from individual prejudice, and is a more psychological way of looking at racism. It ignores structural advantages that some groups receive from the social arrangement. --> 'Racism by Intent' : If your intention cannot be proven, you're off the hook. This is relevant to what we call disparate treatment in legal context. Structural or Systemic Racism --> focuses on institutional power and group position --> seeks social structural sources of racism by looking at racial biases embedded in such phenomena as the inertia of customs, bureaucratic procedures, impersonal routines, laws, or unequal distribution of resources --> 'the institutional arrangements that privilege one group over another' : Our society is structured in certain ways that give advantage to a group(s). Once such arrangements are established, it is difficult to change (due to the second component listed below) --> 'the ideological apparatus that perpetuates and makes those arrangements possible' : In other words, we justify how our society is structured as if the arrangements are normal and the system is, in fact, fair. --> 'racism by consequences' : this view of racism suggest that those who benefit from the racist system are "racist" Discrimination --> discrimination refers to only social acts (behavior), not attitude (that would be prejudice) --> discrimination can be legal or illegal --> (Legal) Jim Crow segregation, the drinking age, age to receive driver's license --> An example of discrimination at the societal level would be The Holocaust Merton's Typology --> 'the prejudice discriminator' : This is someone who we normally call a 'racist' for doing racist things to other people. --> 'the unprejudiced nondiscriminator' : This is something we all strive to become. We don't hate anyone and don't discriminate against anyone. --> 'the unprejudiced discriminator' : Can you be unprejudiced and still discriminate against someone? --> 'the prejudiced nondiscriminator' : A racist hiding his/her prejudice and following normal procedure.
Racial Composition of the US (2010) --> White : 72% --> African American : 13% --> Asian : 5% --> Some other race : 7% --> Two or more : 3% Changes to Race or Ethnic Categories --> 1790: Free White, Non-taxed Indian, Slaves (3/5 of a person) --> 1870: White, Black, Mulatto, Quadroon, Octoroon, Indian --> 1990: White, Black, Japanese, Chinese, Indian --> 1930: White, Black, Japanese, Chinese, Indian, Hindu, Korean, Mexican --> 1980: White, Black or African American, American Indian and Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander --> 2000: "Check all that apply" (aka self reporting) US Census Definitions --> White: "White" refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa. It includes people who indicate their race as "white" or reported entries such as Irish, German, Italian, Lebanese, Arab, Moroccan, or Caucasian. ~ notice how Middle Eastern, North African, and Arab people are considered white. --> Black: "Black or African American" refers to a person having origins in any of the Black racial groups of Africa. It includes people who indicated their race as "Black, African Am., or Negro" or reported entries such as African American, Kenyan, Nigerian, or Haitian. ~ notice the use of the word 'Negro' (which is to be taken out of the 2020 census) --> Asian: "Asian" refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East, Southeast Asia, or the Indian subcontinent, including, for example, Cambodia, China, India, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan, the Philippine Islands, Thailand, and Vietnam. It includes people who indicated their race(s) as "Asian" or reported entries such as "Asian Indian," "Chinese," "Filipino," "Korean," "Japanese," "Vietnamese," and "Other Asian" or provided other detailed Asian responses. ~ notice that Pakistan is included --> Native American: "American Indian or Alaska Native" refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of North and South America (including Central America) and who maintains tribal affiliation or community attachment. This category includes people who indicate their race(s) as "American Indian or Alaska Native" or reported their enrolled or principal tribe, such as Navajo, Blackfeet, Inupiat, Yup'ik, or Central American Indian groups or South American Indian Groups. --> Pacific Islander: "Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander" refers to a person having origins in any of the original peoples of Hawaii, Guam, Samoa, or other Pacific Islands. It includes people who indicate their race(s) as "Pacific Islander" or reported entries such as "Native Hawaiian," "Guamanian or Chamorro," "Samoan," and "Other Pacific Islander" or provided other detailed Pacific Island responses. ~ notice that the Philippines are under the "Asian" category --> Other: "Some Other Race" includes all other responses not included in the White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander race categories described above. Respondents reporting entries such as multiracial, mixed, interracial, or a Hispanic or Latino group (for example, Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, or Spanish) in response to the race question are included in this category. ~ Census states that 'Hispanic' is not a race (or can be of any race) 2017 Official Census Estimates --> White: 76.6% --> Black or African American: 13.4% --> American Indian or Alaska Native: 1.3% --> Asian: 5.8% --> Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander: 0.2% --> Two or More Races: 2.7% --> Hispanic or Latino: 18.1% --> White, Not Hispanic or Latino: 60.7% Race: Objective Category or Subjective Identity?
The Definitions of Sociology --> "the study of human society" ~ some sociologists study primate societies as well --> "Sociology is the scientific study of human social behavior and its origins, development, organizations, and institutions" ~ 'scientific' meaning that it is more objective and evidence based when looking at social phenomena --> "Sociology is the study of social life, social change, and the social causes and consequences of human behavior" (American Sociological Association) ~ What does 'social life' mean? Sociology vs. Psychology --> Psychology: "the study of the mind and behavior. The discipline embraces all aspects of the human experience - from the functions of the brain to the actions of nations, from child development to care for the aged" --> both study 'humans' but psychology= mind and behavior while sociology= social --> 'social' means focusing on social structure and how the arrangements of social structure affect the individual The Sociological Imagination (Mills 1959) --> "individuals, in the welter of their daily experience, often become falsely conscious of their social positions" ( C. Write Mills) ~ only seeing things from an individualistic point of view --> "You can do anything to set your mind to" (Benjamin Franklin) ~ if you work hard you reap the benefits, if you don't work hard you reap nothing Can you think of examples of how we use this individualistic logic to explain social issues involving race? --> Social Imagination: the capacity to think systemically (sociologically) about how many things we experience as personal problems are really social issues shared by others. --> "the first fruit of this imagination is the idea that the individual can understand their own experience and gauge their own fate only by locating herself within her period, that she can know her own chances in life only by becoming aware of those of all individuals in her circumstances" (Mills) --> sociological imagination helps "to grasp history and biography and the relations between the two within society" --> 'the personal troubles of milieu' and 'the public issues of social structure' are crucial distinctions --> "Troubles occur within the character of the individual and within the range of his or her immediate relations with others; they have to do with one's self and with those limited areas of social life of which one is directly and personally aware. Accordingly, the statement and the resolution of troubles properly lie within the individual as a biographical entity and within the scope of one immediate milieu - the social setting that is directly open to her personal experience and to some extent her willful activity. A trouble is a private matter: some value cherished by public is felt to be threatened." (Mills) ~ the sociological imagination helps us to see how we are shaped by our social environments How have social environments influenced you in terms of who you are and why we are the way we are? --> a popular way in defining who we are is to overemphasize individuality and under-emphasize social environments (and sociological imagination provides an important counter argument Michael Brown --> Use this link to jog memory: http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/08/13/us/ferguson-missouri-town-under-siege-after-police-shooting.html?_r=0 --> Many people focus on the actions of Brown or whether or not Wilson was racist, but these are just individual factors --> Public issues of social structure stats: In Ferguson, Missouri 67% of the population is African American, African Americans are 86% of all people subject to a vehicle stop, they are two times more likely to be searched, 2.3 times more likely to be arrested, and are 68% less likely to have their cases dismissed by the municipal judge. --> "it is a lack of personal responsibility among African American members of the Ferguson community that causes African Americans to experience disproportionate harm under Ferguson's approach to law enforcement" --> African Americans are 26% less likely to have contraband found on them during a search than other racial groups