Racial & Ethnic Inequalities
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Lecture 4: Racial and Ethnic Inequalities February 1 st
•Around the world, racial and ethnic conflicts still erupt in genocidal bloodbaths that kill
thousands of people
•There may be economic reasons
•The economic system produces class inequalities, as Marx and Weber have argued
•People of different racial and ethnic groups are streamed into these classes; and the
ideological system legitimates the resulting racial inequalities
•America is a “melting pot”, trying to make all their citizens Americanized
•A race is a set of people with physical or genetic characteristics that are deemed to
produce identifiable differences in appearance. Ex: hair colour, features,
•An ethnic group is a set of people who consider themselves to share common
characteristics that distinguish them from other groups in a society
•Marx: believed capitalists class used ethnicity and race to set workers against each other
so that workers would have a difficult time mobilizing.
•Members of an ethnic group mainly share cultural characteristics such as religion,
occupation, language or politics
•Ethnic groups form communities, some manage better than others to survive as
•One of the factors influencing a communities survival is demographics, which is the
•Ethnic groups are always concerned about people leaving, always concerned with people
•Just as people continuous people joining, there’s a continuous number of people
•Under what conditions will people leave and what conditions will they join?
•Chain migration: determines international patterns of who goes where,
•If you want Canada to be a melting pot, then what you want to do is underline the
formation of ethnic groups
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