psm154cmidterm - Jose Revuelta Political Science M154C TA:...

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Jose Revuelta Political Science M154C TA: O. Garcia 10/28/2008 PS 154C Midterm Question 2: Race Cycles During periods of state crisis, racial ideologies change and the establishment of a new racial order occurs. Sawyer’s race cycle model serves in explaining how racial ideologies change over time, not in a linear fashion, but sporadically as each state consolidates during times of crisis. This allows for better predictions about the future of race-relations after the independence of marginalized people, specifically in Cuba. The race cycle’s model “outlines the relationship among racial progress, mechanisms like state crisis, and the influence of racial ideology.” (Sawyer xx) The model serves to show that changes in racial politics are uneven, with little or no steady improvement. Racial politics is driven by mechanisms such as state crisis, transnational crisis or critical event. These mechanisms provide gains for the marginalized racial groups in regions where they usually would not have such opportunities for equality, i.e. Cuba. A state crisis is defined as “any situation in which the state or regime, or the sovereignty of the state or the nation, is in jeopardy” (Sawyer 5). During state crisis, the state is worried about its survival, so it reaches out to groups and institutes reforms to marshal help. The nature of these reforms is filtered through a preexisting racial ideology, which show the state what options they should pursue in order to restore order in a process known as Consolidation. Consolidation uses racial ideology that feeds into new order and simultaneously changes it. Once the state finds itself responding to pressure, there is reconsolidation and a new racial order begins.
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Revuelta 2 Although this new equilibrium is different than the old equilibrium, it is not always an improvement compared to the old equilibrium. We see this in transnational politics during the period of consolidation. Race becomes an issue, a symbol. As the state begins to return to
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This note was uploaded on 03/15/2009 for the course POL SCI M154C taught by Professor Sawyer during the Fall '08 term at UCLA.

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psm154cmidterm - Jose Revuelta Political Science M154C TA:...

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