POLS 3651/ MIST 3651
September 23, 2013
Lecture 3 Week 3
Communities and Public Law
Mainstream theories of law and Racism
Website Link: www.yorku.ca/khoosh
• Horizontal conceptualization of race vs. Vertical conceptualization of race in Canada.
• Racial differences are used as the basis of discrimination and are socially constructed
• Social Construction: identification of certain groups that share common characteristics. These
characteristics can include religion, etc.
Main three Historical Differentiations we have In Canada
• Aboriginal vs. Colonizers (British and French)
• French vs. British
• British and French vs. other immigrants in Canada
• Fighting Racism requires knowing what it is – not an easy task.
In order to fight racism, we have to know what it is. How do we develop knowledge on racism?
We can put it in a historical perspective to understand what racism is.
You need evidence, facts, and research (primary and secondary research)
Different people develop different understandings of history.
we are also looking for solutions, prescriptions that can fix this problem.
this is not an easy task because it is a very complex issue. 1
• Some ways to understand racism:
• “Visible Minority”
a person that is physically different from the dominant group in society
the idea of the “other” in society
Very Problematic for using this term:
You are grouping everyone into one category “the other/ visible minority”
Perpetuating the difference
• I.E: Quota System
• theory – a “system”, a “doctrine.”A“dogma.”
• Inequality of various races domination of so-called “inferior” races. • Supposed to provide framework for putting facts and information together and to get a better
understanding of what is happening.
• Major theory have a logical and philosophical foundation.
• We live in a dogma. Ideology vs. projected realty.
Race and racism share two characteristics:
• Belief in the equality of various races and in this equality is used socially and politically for domination,
oppression and exploitation.
• The word “racism” first appeared in the Larousse dictionary for the first time in 1932
• Definitions of the term overlap.
The system, which affirms one racial group over another
the existence of biological differences between various races and superiority of one of them.
theory of hierarchy of races based on the belief that social conditions depends on racial characteristics.
(The kind of justification in having a racist society)
Theory of racial hierarchy, which claims