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Social Construction Of "Race"

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Autor:   •  May 3, 2011  •  367 Words (2 Pages)  •  590 Views

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Difference between race (biological) and ethnicity (cultural) вЂ" While the term вЂ?race’ emphasizes biological differences based on skin colour, ethnicity denotes the sense of belonging to a particular community whose members share common cultural traditions. Ethnicity isn't just a question of affiliation; it's also a question of choice. It's also a question of group membership. And it's usually associated with a geographic region.

A race is a “local geographic or global human population distinguished as a more or less distinct group by genetically transmitted physical characteristics.”

The most powerful argument about the differentiation between race and ethnicity is that race becomes institutionalized in a way that has profound social consequences on the members of different groups.

- Race is primarily unitary.

- You can only have one race, but you are able to claim multiple ethnic affiliations.

- You have no control over your race; it's how you're perceived by others. E.g Chinese growing up Australian could claim to be ethnically Australian however her race is still Chinese.

Social construction - A social construction or social construct is any phenomenon "invented" or "constructed" by participants in a particular culture or society, existing because people agree to behave as if it exists or follow certain conventional rules. One example of a social construct is social status.

Research studies have challenged the idea of race by presenting evidence that the scientific basis for racial difference rests on shaky ground. A few studies found that "within group" differences (genetic variations within same-race groups) were more significant than those found between groups representing different races, and thus concluded that there

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