Lecture 4 - Race/Ethnic Inequality
People who are perceived as significantly different from another are often victimized; tallying up
massacres and violence that correspond with racial and ethnic issues (ie. Armenian massacres)
Racial differentiation is not simplistic; it is a cause of extreme violence through conflicts,
inequalities, and such over racial or ethnic differences
Yugoslavia: People next to each other and neighbours for hundreds of years went to war against
each other (Serbs vs. Muslims, etc.) It did not make sense for peace to suddenly be shattered by
Habits of Inequality Theory will give understanding of inequalities with racial and ethnic
Institutional Completeness: strategy used for self protection; ethnic groups are better at protecting
themselves with institutional completeness than any other kind of inequality groups
Social inequalities are collectively imagined
Mythology attaches moral meanings to these inequalities and how these better/worse differences
explain why there are advantages for specific groups over another
Oppression is the taking advantage of victim groups due to narratives of blame
There is always a pushback, creating narratives of validation which are stories of themselves which
call attention to shortcomings of oppressors and such so that they can defend themselves
Actions and mobilization are then taken place through unionization or legal actions or institutional
completeness, etc. as a resistance against oppressors
You can see gradual changes in society due to inequalities
Differentiation and Orientalism
Edward Said (Sa-eed): Born in Egypt, wrote a book Orientalism.
Remembered his palestinian background and inequalities that arose due to Israeli
government and Arabs (in the literature, perception of the West)
He tried to see what the West views the Arabs, Muslims, etc. in which would influence
The Westerners: Think Middle East is a tricky place, full of "the Other" that is completely
different, the Harem is the dominant image of how Westerners see the Middle East;
Women being kept enslaved for entertainment
The images of naked people is not a coincidence; there is a very sexual, sensual imagery
of the Middle East
Oriental is a sweeping generalization; there is much sexual fantasizing
There was a terrible concern that Chinese men were going to enslave White women as
sexual prostitutes with opium
Power in the East being expressed distinctively through the oriental harem.
Then we have basis for important political decision making: "don't care". When there is a
dehumanization of the "enemy" as a complete fundamental difference in moral, cultural, and
Trope is an image that is given as an underlying message, intended to create energy!
Racialization: creates attention to the fact these differences are so important to the behaviour of
people to these inequalities are holy imagined.
The importance of racialization is that calling attention, focusing, and performing what you imagine
to be an important part of it (performing as in acting out your beliefs) Ethno-racial differences may reflect economic inequalities; overlap between racial and ethnic
background, and social class.