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Sociology Study Guide.docx

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McGill University
Sociology (Arts)
SOCI 230
Zoua Vang

Sociology Study Guide RaceSociological Definition of race A group of human beings socially defined by itself or others as distinct on the basis of common physical and increasingly cultural characteristics that are held to be inherent Entails aspects of Skin colour family origin Geography genetic similarities as well as a socially constructed tool used for categorizationWe acquire our knowledge and opinions from our parents environment as well as History Development of racial thinking th Race as a biological difference prevailed till the first half of the 20 C o Polygenesis belief that different races of humans categorize different species o This belief depicts white humans as the most superior speciesDNA evidenceOut of Africa Thesis o Humans share 999 of genetic code and nearly all genetic variation is found in Asians and Europeans and Africans o Geological time too short for modern humans to have evolved into different species racesAge of Enlightenment o Development of a scientific basis of racial thinking o Found a correlation between biology and race o Race became a way to classify people into a larger order ranking based on intellect culture and social progressionNormative notions of superiority and inferioritysomatic differencesClassifications of Humans 4 Subcategories of Homosapiensth 18 CHumans only differ to a certain degree but under the right conditions this can be alteredAfricans may be culturally not biologically inferior and due to this there is potential for salvation th 19 CRace as a type o Differences in permanent and heritable physical and cultural traits o Heirarchical rankordering th Late 19 century belief in Race as a species o Survival of the fittestNatural selection different species evolved to have superior biological traitscharacteristics and these were selected by nature allowing them to survive NATURE PROPOSESCULTURE DISPOSES o Race biologically distinct o Justification for exploitation and subjugation of different peopleSocial Darwinismth Social Darwinism Late 19 centurythe belief that human behaviour and traits are rooted in biology o Human behaviourtraits are rooted in biology o Natural selectioncompetition applicable to different races o Racebased hierarchy of better adaptedless adapted survival of the fittest o White Europeans superior stock of humans selected to survive and propagate o Biological differences explained different culturefortunescivilizations o Reproduction of the most biologically superior human specimens favoured o Internal dissatisfaction White Europeans aware of their superiority however also aware of the limited resources presented and how whites were not contributing and thus bringing down the white raceSocial Darwinism in action in Europe o Racialization process by which native racial significance is attached to groups of people or their activities or alternatively social significance is assigned to perceived physicalcultural differenceanyone can be racializedEx womenhomosexuals o Selfreferential racism process of selfdesignation as superior raceo Europeans believed they were superior to those of visible differenceo There were concerns with the degeneration of the White RaceThe government artificially sustained the lives of unfit poors over other poor ethnic minorities o Wished to cleanse the white race so that only the superior white members of the race would survive to propagate o Paved the way of large movmentsEugenics o Eugenics Sir Francis Galton cousin of Charles Darwin The science of improving a human population by controlled breeding to increase the occurrence of desirable heritable characteristicsAdvocates social intervention to control mating and weed out undesirable genes from the population in order to improve desirable characteristics Both positive and negative selective breeding strategiesPositive selectionencouraged marriagemating couples are genetically fit for marriage screened for genetic mutation and thus make a decision Negative selectionsterilization campaigns propagandaPScampaignsNAZI GERMANY abortion due to knowledge of genetic mutationSocial Darwinism in the US
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