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Lecture 3

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Social Science
Course Code
SOSC 1910
Dorathy Moore

of 3
AP SOSC 1210 (lecture) Wednesday,
September 30, 2009
Missed points from last lecture:
“fundamental freedom” freedoms we have to the state – political right
“democratic rights” - political right
Canada’s rights are very divisible, political are bedrock of all rights
Key concepts in the creation of minorities
Intro: the social creation of minority status
1) definitions of minority & majority/dominant groups
2) labeling & stereotypes
3) invalidation myths & ideologies
4) discrimination & HR violations: forms of discrimination
a) individual b) institutional c) structural/systemic
5) the relationship of prejudice to discrimination
6) othering & the self-fulfilling prophecy
7) outcome: socially constructed minority status/group disadvantage, marginality or
created dependency
Human process dynamic
Not wholly constrained by physical laws, imagined law can have real effect
Social construction of reality, put interpretation of reality (may or may not be true in
absolute sense)
Interpretation, explanation, definition = make sense of world become guidelines
respond to what’s going on
Social construction = definition + direction = form basis of us
^ based on assumption from knowledge/info / or based on truth or none at all
We are capable of social construction & minority groups (not naturally inferior, it’s what
we believe)
Treat minorities how we believe it treatment (our acts based on belief violates HR)
Our prejudices don’t constitute violation of HR can think what we like
Treatment of minorities violate HR
Power all dimensions of life, exercised politically, socially, economically
Not exclusive jurisdiction of government principle source of grant/deny rights
Media can have significant impact on gov’t policies how gov’t act
Based on norms want to impose requisite to exercise power
Power itself not problem, way exercised is problem
Rights deal w/ inequality in power way to counterbalance
onot # or proportion of population
oworking in HR perspective
ogroup/category subject to denial HR social economic political
society level more minority than dominant
oAparti South Africa
oUpper vs. lower class
oFrench minority in Quebec powerful, outside not
Corresponding majority, relative notion eg. Upper vs. lower class
Minority @ society level
Ppl often assume it’s a negative thing to be minority, don’t like to see self in those groups
distance from negative impact & constructive status
Minority denial of rights, nothing wrong w/ group it’s social treatment & perception
Rights on paper vs. reality
Virtue of having minority status cannot be oppressive of self
Learn oppress from being an object of it
oDefined w/ reference to any given human attribute as social category
omost power in society
oCharacteristics they decide as normal, socially significant + positive
oThose who differ from characteristics = a problem
Once abnormal, doesn’t share characteristic of norms
Labeling used to justify HR violation
Eg. Label abnormal population not entitled to full HR + deny equal opportunity
Results: some population interiorized, occupy lower status in society
oNot attributes inferior
oSome or one attribute low in society
Based on negative assumptions not scientifically based
Normative attributes & dominant groups own culture innately inferior
Ignores scientific method:
Range/variations within given population
Eg. Women, innumerable
# of similarities between population, more similar than different
Range is huge (where does it start & end?
Typical majority white, Christian, English, middle-aged, male, straight
May be majority on one but minority on other characteristic
Not exclusive jurisdiction in any one group
Equality capability labeling positive or negative discriminating or non-discriminating
Gov’ts equally capable in discriminating, pass/don’t pass/change/don’t change laws
From religious beliefs Eve created from Adam’s ribs women = possession
Can develop into theories (pseudoscience)
Kallen: myths are platform of discrimination
Discrimination differential + unequal treatment “assumed membership in groups”
Treatment based on stereotype could be positive or negative, generally negative
An individual denies another’s HR
Acts stem generally from prejudice personal insults, assumed negative characteristics
System discrimination manifests itself in 2 ways
1) institutional discrimination carries out prejudice, individual may not be but
actions are
2) structural discrimination built into social system, not linked to prevailing
prejudice but to prejudice existed in the past
Remain unchanged when system clearly discriminating
Section 51, would’ve stayed that way if court didn’t offer protection dealt w/ systemic
Group/categorical discrimination deepen & widen minority disadvantaged long term
Relationship prejudice + discrimination, prejudice doesn’t always mean discriminate
Behind discrimination are stereotypes are “othering”
oSocial distancing process
oMarginalizing unequal opportunity
oDon’t take their needs/contribution to the society
oNot considered integral + important to the society
Minorities may be prejudice towards self & own group minority self hatred
Produce sense of alienation
oAccepting dominant groups belief as own
oInternalized the label & diminution
oMinority syndrome internalize negative label
Self-fulfilling prophecy label sticks & act in accordance to it & believe in what’s
negatively imposed on them
onot inevitable & reversible
ooutcome = socially constructive states & group disadvantage
Label = socially constructive for them