Socch8 - Chapter 8 Race and Ethnicity Distinguishing...

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Chapter 8 – Race and Ethnicity
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Distinguishing Between Race and Ethnicity Race & ethnicity sometimes used interchangeably, but based on 2 different assumptions Race depends on an assumption of biological distinction Ethnicity depends on an assumption of cultural distinction both  are social constructions Race and ethnicity are single most predictive factors in determining a  person’s eventual social position What is Race? Sociologists understand it is: a biological distinction with no basis in any empirical fact division based on cultural factors Not until the 18 th century – physical attributes become determining factors in “race”
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Biraciality and Multiraciality – no such thing as a pure race. every human group has mixed ancestry Miscegenation – interracial romantic relationships often considered deviant & forbidden interracial romantic relationships are still stigmatized to some degree
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The Sociology of Race and Ethnicity Minority Groups – not defined strictly by numerical minority. For a group to be classified as a minority group, it needs to have 4 characteristics: Differential Power -  significant differences in access to economic, social and political resources Identifiability – share physical or cultural traits that distinguish them from dominant group Ascribed status –  what you are born into it and cannot change. Solidarity and group awareness –  awareness of membership in a definable
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“Majority” Groups – constructed not so much by race as through skin color. Dark vs light people…people of color vs white people light over dark within groups – within racial groups, people who are lighter are privileged over people who are darker How We Got White People –  privilege of whiteness doesn’t depend on skin color. Has a history & results from political positioning. Teutonic people (England, Germany, Scandinavia) were defined as white, but people from other parts of Europe weren’t.
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Protestant, small town elite feared these new primitive groups. By 1924, door to immigration from most of Europe was shut. President Theodore Roosevelt worried about “race suicide” and urged Anglo Saxon women to have more kids. Eugenics – Science of Breeding Early sociologists tried to demonstrate immigrants from “primitive” societies inferior to native born Americans.
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