Thinking about those around you who are of different races and ethnic and/or religious backgrounds than you, to what extent have you analyzed any beliefs and/or prejudices you may have about others? To what extent might these beliefs affect how you make decisions or judgments as an adult? Do you think it's possible to have these kinds of beliefs and/or prejudices and be unaware of them at a conscious level? Why or why not?
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Race & Ethnicity: A question of Culture Based Perspectives
We are what we are due to our socialization. From the time we were born, our parents, our family, our immediate circle of friends and community contributed to what we are. At home when we were very young our parents imbued upon us the necessary skills we needed to survive - we learned the basics of communicating what we feel and think, expressing our ideas and our opinions. We also learned the physical activities required for us to live acceptably as part of our family - the rules, the difference between good and bad and the skills to 'get away' with things when need be due to our experience of 'punishment'. The key word here is social situation. Understand that as sentient beings who learn by observation and example we become expert players in our social realities according to the social situation. Now, don't fret, it's easy to understand. One's social situation is the conditions he was born and brought up in and lives in. Social situations though changes and is not permanent. The affect of the experience living in it though, is and this contributes to an individual's socialization which in turn shapes his perspective on life, his disposition, his personality and most especially his cultural identity. To get a better understanding of the subject matter, let us define the important elements in this sociological subject -
? Socialization - a continuing process whereby an individual acquires a personal identity and learns the norms, values, behaviour, and social skills appropriate to his or her social position. (Dictionary.com, 2008)
? Culture (in Anthropology & Sociology) - (1) the sum total of ways of living built up by a group of human beings and transmitted from one generation to another; (2)the behaviours and beliefs characteristic of a particular social, ethnic, or age group, i.e. the Tribal Culture, the Goth Culture. (Dictonary.com, 2008)
? Ethnicity - ethnic traits, background, allegiance, or association; i.e. Hispanic, Jewish, Chinese, Native American. (Dictonary.com, 2008)
? Race - The term race or racial group usually refers to the concept of dividing humans into populations or groups on the basis of various sets of characteristics. The most widely used human racial categories are based on visible traits (especially skin color, cranial or facial features and hair texture), and self-identification. (Wikipedia, 2008)
Now, with this in mind consider the similarities that all human beings experience in their lives notwithstanding country of origin. We have parents and family, people who from the day we were born looked after us to help us in making our way in ...
The solution discusses in a comprehensive manner the concepts of ethnicity/race, multiculturalism and diversity from a sociological perspective to help the student in gaining a better comprehension of the subject matter in order to exercise reflexivity in an analysis of personal viewpoints to ascertain whether or not it is possible to have unconscious prejudices. The solution is also attached as a wordfile for easy printing. It is written in APA format and referenced for expansion.