Definitions - • Minorities must always be understood in...

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Definitions A. What is a Race? Robertson (1989:193) describes a race as a group of people who share similar physical (genetic) characteristics . 1. Racial Categories Racial categories are human creations. As a biological concept, the term race is almost meaningless. The intense sociological interest in race is due to the fact that people attack meaning and values, either real or imaginary, to physical differences between groups of people. B. What is an Ethnic Group? An ethic group shares similar cultural characteristics and culture is learned . Characteristics that might define an ethnic group would include a common language, religion, national origin, dietary practices , etc. An ethnic group may be distinguished from another group by a high level of social interaction. Ethnic groups perceive themselves as a cultural unit. C. What is a Minority Group? A minority is a category of people who lack power, privilege, and prestige in social, political or economic spheres
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Unformatted text preview: . • Minorities must always be understood in relation to others in the social structure. A minority groups lacks power, prestige, and privilege in relation to others. They are unable to achieve their will. They lack resources to support their own interests effectively. • Minority groups are people who are singled out for unequal treatment. • Minorities have a shared sense of identity. • Minorities may actually be a numerical majority (e.g., women in American society). D. Racism Racism refers to attitudes, beliefs, or behaviors that favor one group over another . Racism involves an ideology (a belief structure) that explains racist beliefs. The minority group might be seen as biologically inferior and, therefore, practices involving their domination and exploitation are reasonable . Others may justify racist beliefs by citing scientific evidence. Regardless, a pervasive ideology (belief structure) exists to validate the unequal expectations held by the majority....
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