Blog 3

Reading that the idea of race originated in America is very indicative as to why the country stands in it’s current state. With the election of President Barack Obama, many were quick to conclude that the country had become “post-racial” when in fact there is no truth in that statement. Perhaps yes, it’s a step toward equality but current events tell us that race and racism is still a very much a part of American culture. The social construct of race has permeated this country, as well as others, and with the creation of this categorization it’s become a link in the way that people identify themselves. There are strong ties to racial identity that embrace diversity in the experience of culture. “Post-racial” is not something that seems possible, nor necessary, it’s a “post-racist” society that we need to concern ourselves with achieving. It might help to understand that race does exist as biological determinate, but that it’s social conditioning that has caused the common misconception of difference.

 

One statement that stood out to me from the American Anthropological Association (AAA) was: “The continued sharing of genetic materials has maintained all of humankind as a single species.” This statement stood out to me because it references humankind uncategorized by racial difference. It acknowledges that biologically humans do vary enough in their genetic makeup to categorize them as anything but human. More importantly, the statement acknowledges that without the social mythologies about racial difference, race does not technically exist. At this point in history race is not something that can be erased, however it’s not something that can change the human experience biologically. If that were the case people would be largely different than the way they think themselves to be now.

 

If I were to try and explain the idea of non-existent biological race to someone who was unfamiliar with the topic, I would first ask them to identify what makes someone racially different from themselves. If their answer was at all related to phenotypic differences, like skin color, height, or body type, I would ask them to eliminate those categories from their identifiers think on the question again. Hopefully, this would bring them to the realization that despite physical difference there is one species of human. There is no variation large enough between two people, even of different races, to create a new species. There is no variant large enough to create anything other than human. Race divides us socially, not biologically.

3 thoughts on “Blog 3

  1. I like how you trying to approach why there isn’t a biological boundary between human races by asking the audience questions first. It’s very smart to start your explanation by asking them what do they think. However, I always have a question about the lecture we learned: what if we just have different “kinds” of people within the human species? Just like for dogs, we have the yellow lab, Schnauzers, Husky…we all agree that they are different “kind” of dogs. They probably share the same gene, but how can we ignore their huge appearance difference? Would that be interesting to know? Other than that, I like how you brought up specific examples to help demonstration. For example, you brought up Barack Obama to help you explain why people think we are at the Post-racial era. Overall, I like your post! Good job:)

  2. Great first paragraph! I agree with you in that this country is far from being post racial. As you stated yes, we are on the path towards being there one day. However we have been taking small baby steps so to speak. There is still so much racism in this country that as you stated has been socially conditioned into us. This is not something that will be forgotten or erased so easily but just as we were conditioned into believing these racial differences. I believe we can be conditioned or educating ourselves to see that there is no real race differences. We all are one race and these false racial categorizations we have been led to believe are inaccurate. We fight them by informing ourselves and educating those around us.

  3. It is interesting that you bring up the idea about “post-racial” and President Barack Obama. At that time, I remembered there were many news “celebrated” this was a big step toward equality, but later in the news begun to “celebrate” President Obama is the first black President in the United States. I think stereotypical of race and racism do not just happen in the United States, but also all of the countries. For example, I remembered early Japanese comic books always drew Westerners with blond hair and blue eyes. Even now, I still experience race issue and racism in my country, Taiwan. Most of the Taiwanese consider people who are from Philippines, Vietnam, Indonesia, etc. (South East Asia countries) as minority groups and poor because there are many Taiwanese would hire those people to take care of elders and children, and there are even companies would help those people to travel to Taiwan and help them find a family, so there are many Taiwanese do not respect them and look at them differently.

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