Chapter 9 inequalities of race and ethnicity
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Chapter 9 Inequalities of Race and Ethnicity. Minorities. Minorities – a group of people w/ physical or cultural traits different from those of the dominant group Numbers alone do not make you a minority Ex. Women in the U.S. Key factors

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  • Minorities – a group of people w/ physical or cultural traits different from those of the dominant group

  • Numbers alone do not make you a minority

    • Ex. Women in the U.S.

  • Key factors

    • Has distinctive physical or cultural characteristics which can be used to separate if from the majority

    • The minority is dominated by the majority

      • Majority hold an unequal share of desired goods, services, and privleges

    • Minority traits are often believed by the dominant majority to be inferior

    • Members of the minority have a common sense of identity with strong group loyalty

    • The majority determines who belongs to the minority through ascribed status


  • Race – people sharing certain inherited physical characteristics that are considered important w/in a society

  • In sociology, social attitudes and characteristics that relate to race are more important than physical differences

  • No scientific evidence that connects any racial characteristic w/ innate superiority or inferiority


  • Ethnicity – group identified by cultural, religious, or national characteristics

  • Ex. Language, religion, values, beliefs, norms, and customs

  • Ethnocentrism – main cause for negative attitudes toward ethnic minorities

Racial and ethnic relations
Racial and Ethnic Relations

  • If minority groups are - accepted leads to assimilation, if rejected leads to conflict

  • Assimilation – the blending or fusing of minority groups into the dominant society

  • Anglo-conformity – the most prevalent pattern of assimilation in America

    • Traditional American institutions are maintained

    • Immigrants are accepted as long as they conform to the “accepted standards” of the society

  • Others must either give up or suppress its own value

Racial and ethnic relations1
Racial and Ethnic Relations

  • Melting Pot – all ethnic and racial minorities voluntarily blend together

  • Tossed salad – traditions and cultures exist side by side – many Sociologist prefer this idea

    • Cultural Pluralism – desire of a group to maintain some sense of identity separate from the dominant group

      • Accommodation – an extreme from of cultural pluralism. Occurs when a minority maintains its own culturally unique way of life

Patterns of conflict
Patterns of Conflict

  • Genocide – the systematic effort to destroy an entire population

    • Most extreme version

    • Ex. – Holocaust, Hutu vs. Tutsis, Serbians’ “Ethnic Cleansing” of Muslims in Bosnia and Kosovo

  • Population transfer – a minority is forced either to move to a remote location or to leave entirely

    • Ex. - Native Americans

  • Subjugation – process by which a minority group is denied equal access to the benefits of society

    • Most common pattern of conflict

    • De jure segregation – denial of equal access based on the law

      • Ex. – U.S. schools before Brown vs. Board of Ed.

    • De facto segregation – denial of equal access based on everyday practice

  • Ex - Neighbors not selling homes to certain races, businesses not promoting certain minorities