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Race and Ethnic Group Stratification: Beyond “We” and “They” Soc 100Dr. Santos.

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Presentation on theme: "Race and Ethnic Group Stratification: Beyond “We” and “They” Soc 100Dr. Santos."— Presentation transcript:

1 Race and Ethnic Group Stratification: Beyond “We” and “They” Soc 100Dr. Santos

2 What Characterizes Race and Ethnic Groups? Minority groups –Distinguishable –Excluded or denied full participation –Defined and valued differently usually less favorably –Stereotyped, ridiculed, condemned, or otherwise defamed –Develop collective identities

3 What Characterizes Race and Ethnic Groups? Minority groups are formed historically and sustained by ideology & social practice Dominant groups are not always a numerical majority, but always hold power Ethnic and racial groups are the most common minority groups in the world, but also castes, indigenous tribes, oppressed nationalities

4 The Concept of Race Race is a group within the human species that is identified by a society as presumably having certain biologically inherited physical characteristics that are significant Racial classifications have been based on numerous physical characteristics, usually accompanying European colonial expansion in the American, Asia, and Africa. –Became highly “academic” in the 19th century

5 Origins of the Concept of “Race” Race relation problems are social-historical in origin –Racist doctrines lack any scientific basis –Pre-Darwin: climate theories, polygenesis vs. monogenesis In the 1970s, the United Nations issued a “Statement on Race” that stated: –All people are born free and equal both in dignity and in rights –Racism stultifies personal development –(Racial) conflicts cost nations money and resources –Racism foments international conflict

6 Social Construction of Race: Symbolic Interaction Analysis Social significance is the idea from Symbolic interaction theory that social consequences constitute reality: “when people believe something is real, then it becomes real in its consequences.” –All individuals classify objects, including humans –People assigned group membership, in part, on physical appearance as an easy classificatory scheme –Classifications are used to scientifically study humans –Classifications can provide individuals with an identity

7 The Significance of Race versus Class Racial stratification was the central stratification system in the US for many years Inequality between Blacks and Whites persist –Residential segregation persists –Wealth & income inequality persist –Socioeconomic indicators show persistent inequality The class division of Black America is growing –Two in five African Americans are middle-class –A Black underclass persists in inner-city areas

8 Ethnic Groups Ethnic groups are groups where membership is based on shared cultural heritage and is often connected with a national or geographic identity –Many racial groups are ethnic groups –Some ethnic groups concentrated in ethnic enclaves The federal government plays a central role in creating ethnic groups & regulating ethnic relations

9 Processes that Keep Minorities Unequal from the Dominant Group PROCESSRESULT StratificationMinority status PrejudicePoor self-concept, negative relations with others RacismNegative attitudes, stereotypes, self- fulfilling prophecy DiscriminationPoor jobs, income, education, housing Negative ContactHostilities, war, conflict between groups

10 Prejudice and Racism: Micro-Level Analysis Prejudice are attitudes (thoughts and feelings) that prejudge/devalue a group, usually negatively and not based on facts –Stereotyping is the categorization of large numbers of people by prejudiced individuals Often distorted, oversimplified, or exaggerated ideas Passed down over generations through the culture and tradition Applied to all members of a group Used to justify prejudice, discrimination, and unequal distribution of resource –A self-fulfilling prophesy is the incorporation of stereotyped behavior into an individual’s view of themselves

11 Explanations of Prejudice: Micro-Level Analysis Frustration-aggression theory is a theory which states that acts of prejudice and discrimination are motivated by anger and frustration individuals feel when they cannot achieve their work or goals Scapegoating is a form of aggressive action motivated by frustration against minority groups because an individual is unable to vent frustration toward the real target or cause

12 Racism Racism is any attitude, belief, or institutional arrangement that favors one racial group over another; this favoritism may result in intentional or unintentional consequences for minority groups –Ideological racism –Symbolic racism –Institutional racism

13 Discrimination: Meso-Level Analysis Discrimination is actions taken against members of a minority group –Individual discrimination is action taken against minority group members which can take the form of exclusion, avoidance, or violence –Institutional discrimination intentional and unintentional actions engrained in the normal or routine part of the way an organization operates that have consequences that restrict minority group members Side-effect discrimination Past-in-present discrimination Discrimination and prejudice are often found working together and reinforce one another

14 Dominant and Minority Group Contact: Macro-Level Analysis The form of dominant and minority group relations in a nation depend on several factors: –Who has more power –The quest of the dominant group for scare resources, including land, labor, and commodities –The cultural norms of each group: ethnocentrism –The social histories of the group –The times and circumstances

15 Types of Group Relations

16 Theoretical Explanations of Dominant-Minority Group Relations: Conflict Theory Privileged people perpetuate prejudice and discrimination against minority group members to keep privileges and resources Three critical factors contribute to hostility over resources –If two groups of people are identifiably different then “we” versus “they” thinking may develop –If the groups come into conflict over scarce resources that both groups want for themselves, hostilities are very likely to arise –If one group has much more power than the other, intense dislike between the two groups and misrepresentation of each group by the other is virtually inescapable

17 Theoretical Explanations of Dominant-Minority Group Relations: Conflict Theory Split Labor Market theory -- characterizes the labor market as having two levels –Primary labor market, held by native workers –Secondary labor market, reserved for inmigrants

18 Theoretical Explanations of Dominant-Minority Group Relations: Structural Functional Theory A cheap pool of labors who are in and out of work serves several functions for society –A cheap pool of labor provides a labor force to do “dirty work” –They make occupations which service the poor possible –They buy goods others do not want –They set examples for others of what not to be –They allow others to feel good about giving to charity

19 Theoretical Explanations of Dominant-Minority Group Relations: Structural Functional Theory Prejudice, racism, and discrimination are dysfunctional for society in many ways –They result in a loss of human resources –They cost society due to poverty and crime –They maintain hostilities between groups –And they fuel disrespect for those in power

20 Theoretical Explanations of Dominant-Minority Group Relations: Cultural Explanations Prejudice and discrimination are passed on from generation to generation through cultural transmission through socialization, institutional structures, and media stereotypes –Stereotypes limit the opportunities available to minority group members

21 The Effects of Prejudice, Racism, and Discrimination Individual Effects –Unequal life chances, health, and access to property –Victims can also have low self-esteem from devalued status in society Organizations and communities –Lose the talents of individuals they exclude –Government subsidies cost millions but made necessary by lack of opportunities for minority individuals Cultural costs –Attempts to justify racism by stereotyping and labeling

22 Minority Reactions to Prejudice, Discrimination, and Racism Five common reactions to dealing with a minority group status: –Assimilation –Acceptance –Avoidance –Aggression –Change-oriented Collective Action

23 Policies to Reduce Prejudice, Racism, and Discrimination Micro-Level Policies –Individual or Small Group Therapy Meso-Level Policies –Organized group contact Macro-Level Policies –Lobbying, educational information dissemination, canvassing –Government agencies Civil Rights Commission, Fair Employment Practices Commission, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission –Legislation –Nonviolent Resistance Protest marches, rallies, watchdog monitoring, and boycotts

24 Policies to Reduce Prejudice, Racism, and Discrimination

25 Affirmative Action is a social policy created to change the unequal distribution of resources –Strict affirmative action is a policy that involves affirmative or positive steps to make sure that unintended discrimination does not occur –Quota systems are policies that require employers to hire a certain percentage of minorities –Preference policies are policies based on the belief that sometime people must be treated differently in order to treat them fairly and to create equality

26 Global Movements for Human Rights: Macro-Level Policies Global issues and ethnic conflicts in the social world are interrelated The United Nations passed a Declaration of Universal Human Rights after the Holocaust to ensure that every global citizen is awarded particular human rights National governments and privately funded advocacy groups work for international human rights

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