Race and Racism 545 Fall 2014 (A. Nouvet)

About this class

Champlain College, Fall 2014

This course will introduce students to the concept of race from the perspective of biological and cultural anthropology. The first part of the course focuses on the distribution of human biological variation and compares this variation to contemporary ideas about race. The second part traces the historical development of the concept of race, the role that slavery, colonialism and science have played in the dissemination of the belief in race, as well as modern ideas of race. The third part of the course will explore the reality of racism through case studies from various countries, with a focus on Canada. A consideration of the effects of white privilege and how racism can continue to exist in democratic societies will also be undertaken.

Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by c.papadopoulos on October 28, 2014
The article “’Racist’ Halloween costumes stir debate” by Marlene Habib of CBC News posted on October 27th, 2011 discusses the issue of people wearing Halloween costumes that some members of different ethnic groups find rather offensive, and well, racist. A campaign was launched by Ohio University’s Students Teaching About Racism in Society, also known as STARS, and fired up much debate as to whether or not wearing ethnically influenced clothing was appropriate.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Emily24 on October 28, 2014
The article “ Racism is so insidious, even black people underestimate it.” by Kali Holloway is an article published on September 29, 2014 by the newspaper TheGuardian. The article talks about the shocking revelation that many white people in America believe that racism is a made-up problem by other races and that it is rarely a factor that takes place in the cases of police brutality. The author of the article however, rebuttals by referring to the many studies that show that although whites are the one who use illegal drugs, blacks are more liked to be jailed for drug use.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Melyssa Brais on October 28, 2014
In her article “Views You Can Use: ‘No Angel,’ Bad Journalism?” published in U.S. News on August 26th, 2014, Teresa Welsh discusses the criticism that the New York Times has been facing following the profile it published of Michael Brown, a young black man who was killed by a police officer a few weeks earlier. In his profile, the victim is said to be “no angel,” a statement to which many react.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Melissa93 on October 28, 2014
In the news article “Torrence Collier, 11, says he faces racism, extreme bullying in Westport” from the CBC News from June 11, 2014, explains the effects racism in schools can have on children. Torrence Collier, and 11 year old boy has experienced racism and bullying in school by his peers due to him being the only “black child” in the small town of Westport. He endures daily endless slurs, threats, and sometimes physical assaults. Torrence goes to school feeling scared, wondering why everyone hates him, and he feels horrible about himself.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by lm13 on October 28, 2014
The article "Yaya Touré: players could boycott 2018 World Cup in Russia over racism" by Stuart James on the Huffington Post on October 24, 2014 explains why some soccer players might be inclined to boycott the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia due to racism in this country. Yaya Touré is a black soccer player who is apart of the Manchester City soccer team. He brought up the possibility of this boycott after fans of the opposing team racially abused him during a game facing Manchester City to CSKA Moscow.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by AshleyThomas on October 28, 2014
            In the article “Racism may accelerate aging in African-American men” posted by University of Maryland, researchers found that African-American men who are affected by racial discrimination tend to have a shorter life expectancy. These men are more likely to get diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and telomeres. Within a short period of time, there is a repetitive sequence of DNA that influences the end of chromosomes which is defined by the term telomeres. With stress of discrimination and men experiencing anti-black, this can cause a rapid decrease in men’s telomeres.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Béatrice on October 28, 2014
In the article “Ebola, Poverty, and Racism”, Thadeus Pato claims that the Ebola virus is not a new discovery, that Scientifics discovered the disease back in 1976. The last epidemic before this present one was in Uganda and in Congo, in 2007. The disease is transmitted through body fluids. Even if it dies immediately when it is outside the body fluids, the mortality is still high because the virus “likes to multiply”. In fact, the Ebola virus does not come from human, it comes from bats. Human contracted the disease by accident. The sociopolitical situation in Africa is not easy.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by laurie.c on October 28, 2014
The article “Has Ebola Exposed a Strain of Racism?”, written for the New York Times by Hanna Kozlowska on October 21, 2014 explains how the Ebola virus has brought signs of racism in the United States of America. According to the point of view of Josephs Weeks, the nephew of the black man who recently died in the United States from the Ebola virus, his uncle was victim of racism in the hospital.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Roro on October 28, 2014
Too cool for school or too Islamic for school?  

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by 1030735 on October 28, 2014
The article “Black youths arrested by racist cops in Rochester, N.Y.” explains that three young black teenagers, no older than the age of 16 and 17 were arrested at a bus stop waiting to be picked up.  The three star athletes that were waiting for their team school bus to pick them up for their basketball game were spotted by police officers and were arrested for disorderly conduct and obstruction. The three boys were trying to explain the situation to the officers, but the officers ignored them and arrested them anyways.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by rumibarua on October 28, 2014
The article “At School, It Matters If You’re Black Or White” is an article written by Brent Staples, printed in The New York Times on March 28th, 2014. The article discusses evidence that keeps turning up to prove that school districts invoke harsher punishment against minority students in comparison to non-minority students. In fact, in an earlier case in the Christina School District in Delaware, an investigation identified examples in which African American students engaged in identical punishable behavior to white students.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Wilson La on October 28, 2014
          The article "Discrimination in Housing Against Nonwhites Persists Quietly, U.S. Study Finds" written by Shaila Dewan in The New York Times from June 11th, 2013 argues that racism against "nonwhites" is still apparent even in today's modern day U.S. society.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by emjones on October 27, 2014
The article “Rise Above Racism by Sticking Together” by William M Grace published on February 19th 2013, focuses mainly on the fact that African Americans do not help their situation by just sitting around and blaming the whites. The article states that there is no denying that black people are victims of discrimination, in many aspects of life, but that they cannot just sit around playing the “blame game”.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Jsquesnel on October 27, 2014
The article “France: pas de niqab à l’Opéra Bastille’’ was published on October 22, 2014 by LaPresse and written by Emilie Cote. This article demonstrates the injustice that women wearing the niqab live with in France. In fact, a law adopted in 2010 obligates women that are wearing a niqab or any other clothes that could hide their face to not show up in public space. This is why, October 3rd, a Muslim women assisting to the Opera La Traviata de Verdi was expelled during the intermission. Some of the singers were not comfortable with the presence of a woman wearing a niqab.

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Champlain College, Saint-Lambert
by Amelietessier on October 26, 2014
The article ‘’White teacher win $350K in Racial-Bias case’’ by Neal Colgrass in the Newser from August 9, 2014 explains that a black principal said harsh racist comments about white teachers and fired one of them for no valid reason.

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3 years 12 months ago

First of all, I am writing here because the sports industry is something that interests me very much. I also agree with the idea that the coach is doing very good work with the sports community, and it is important that this is recognized. Racism does sadly occur even within sports, and it is something that should not have its place at all. Although this occurred in the past, it is never too late to take a stand. One person can indeed make a difference and have a voice that may inspire others. Furthermore, as seen in class, it can also have an impact on children. Children tend to watch sports at a very young age with their families, for example, and the media tends to be very influential on children. Although children are not seen as being colourblind according to Erin Winkler, they interpret what they see they way they see it. Therefore, it is also important to realize how beneficial this action is for children, since it can also help show them how important it is to stand up for themselves in live and to be heard rather than to fade into the silence. To conclude, this article was very powerful, and this man is very inspirational, and he will be hopefully one of many to fight for change.

4 years 3 weeks ago

This comment is to add to your conclusion that the advertisement is hypersexualising women and is making negative impacts on women in society. To add to this article, I would like to ask if there are any colored women I these adds? If not this means there is an even bigger negative impact on society in general it isn't only regressing women in society but also it becomes in some sort racist. As we saw in class women of color have a bigger task in trying to get accepted in big fashion companies. This is all because of the beauty standards set y the companies and by the population. What we like to see and we don't like to see. As said in one documentary watched in class Fashion companies like having lets say Black women in their company but they need to be a white women dipped in Chocolate. This means that they want a black colored skin women but with white women traits such as thin nose blablabla... These two problems must be fixed by society with drastic measures. We need to start changing our ways of thinking and try to help out women in the fashion industry by saying you don't need to always be half naked to be attractive and you don't need to to be white to be a successful model. Many beauty standards are set such as being very petite but we are seing that fashion companies are trying to move onto something new because the population is starting to see their own beauty, the beauty in the natural body of a women.

4 years 3 weeks ago

First of all, I am commenting here because I watched a Ted Talk in my Myth of Race and The Reality of Racism class with a similar topic, which I found very interesting. I personally agree with your point of view, and it is important to realize how high the expectations are in men. However, from another point of view, it could also be interesting to incorporate races or racial categories into this equation. For example, when looking at the 'man box', it is indeed true that most men feel as though they are trapped in a box full of responsibilities and restraints at a very young age. If this were to be looked at with race, people from minority groups may tend to feel much more trapped than people from a majority group. When children grow up, they tend to suffer much pressure from their surroundings, in order to ensure they remain safe and smart. Then there comes the issue of minority groups, who suffer much more pressure due to the stereotypes they may face due to their culture. For example, a black child may be much more restricted in performing certain behaviours because they are seen as dangerous or as robbers, while mexicans or latinos will be seen as being involved in drugs, These are stereotypes that are sadly seen in today's society, and as we have seen in class, children are not colourblind, and can quickly pick up on these racial issues, which I do not believe is something we would like our children to face later on in life. To conclude, although racial stereotypes may still exist, the 'man box' is seen differently for men depending of their race, and this is something that could be changed, since all men are the same despite where they come from.

4 years 1 month ago

I responded to this article because I love sports and always interested of learning the racist aspects inside sports. I am surprised of the information given on Michael Jordan's life and the racist side of him. Not because he was an awesome basketball player but also he is known around thee world because of his brand. He is a Multi-millionaire because of the Jordan brand, he is public figure to all sport and clothing fans. People buy because of his basketball fame and because of his marketing name. He is also proactive inside schools and sport teams, where he tells his life story of how he persevered to get where he is now. This man has accomplished so much and is probably one of the most known athletes out there. The fact that he confirmed being racist when he was a teenager doesn't show the right example to all his fans out there. Especially with todays media they always try to make the story more dramatical than it really is, so they wont explain why he was racist but just say that he was racist. It is very understandable why he was racist but he also generalized that all white people are racist, yes at that time their were a lot of racist white people but their was people white people who had their heart at the right place and would accept Blacks.
These days there still is a lot of racism but people might not show it as much but still find ways to be racist. Racism is a part of life everywhere, blacks in our society have less advantages, they are looked at by the authorities differently. Michael might not of approached the situation he was thrown in the right way, he maybe should of thought about what happened to him and not generalize. But looking at it from his eyes it is very understandable that he got mad and was pushed to the limit, I am pretty sure he had previous events where racism was a part of and made this last event more drastic, he hit his limit point. Personally I am totally against any kind of racism, yes sometimes people slip and say something that might be racist without wanting to hurt anybody, we all need to be careful of what we say and do. Michael Jordan shares this story and it is very relevant to all where it can educate us to maybe not accept what happens to you but also not generalize what happened. We all have different views on "Race" and shouldn't be thrown into the same pot.

4 years 1 month ago

Firstly, I am commenting here because the title was strongly appealing to me. It is also a very interesting topic, and it is important to realize that this is still an issue in today's society. It is very disturbing to see how a landlord or a janitor can be racist against a particular group. Racism has been present in the native community for quite some time, and we should definitely put an end to it. People who have the finances and that are able to afford an apartment should be allowed to rent one no strings attached. Being racist against other minority groups could lead to poverty in extreme cases, where people would have to live on the street because they would have no where else to go. The thought of this is excruciating, which is why things must definitely change for the better, and soon. People need to become more involved indeed, help further identify the problem, and welcome the minorities with open arms rather than with closed doors. Although it may be difficult to do at first, it is important to realize that there are many different races all around us, and that race or skin color does not in any way define a person or what they are.

4 years 2 months ago

To begin, I am commenting on this article because I used the same topic, and found this article very interesting and similar to mine. This is a very saddening topic, and it is quite shocking that there was no action taken before this specific outburst from Mulcair that these types of things must stop. I also agree that this is a very large crisis, and clearly a very bright case of racism. This issue has been around for much longer than we believe, but it is very reassuring indeed to see how we are finally taking a step forward towards change. This will help families grieve, but it will also help support the idea that today, in 2015, we are a very open and multicultural society, and that we support all races. This debate being done during the political debate is a very important social issue, because it shows how we are not oblivious to racism, and how it still occurs in our society today. However, will change be made? Will we be able to stop these racist behaviours, and stop being blind to it or pretending that it is not around us? Hopefully someday this will end, because we miss so many opportunities in life by excluding people simply because they are different.

4 years 2 months ago

I chose to answer to this article because I was wondering how can a natural disaster create racism within a population? The fact that the two "Races" in this article have both completelycompletely different opinions on how there life style is now is very bad. Yes, probably most of those who where in a location might of have already been poor which means that they have had a harder time with recuperating but there is no reason why the should be saying that they haven't improved. The city should of pushed to have mixed neighborhoods and create less of a racial disparity. Now both "Races" are completely separated which makes.it even worse because you just see the poor Black neighborhoods and The rich white neighborhoods. As spoken about in class, the blacks in general aren't poor because they are stupid but because of slavery and segregation they had less time and less of an opportunity to learn and get good jobs. Compared to whites who always had the opportunity to go to school and get good jobs. They community of New Orleans is very diverse, what I think is that the Blacks have a reason to not be happy about the process of rebuilding, and whites have a easy time with their money and the government helping them out more. You are right by saying that the article should be on the area of where the people live and not of their "Race".

4 years 8 months ago

Your post was short and concise which made for a good interesting read. Strong statistics were used to back up your statements. Virtue ethics is basing ethical behavior on the virtues held by the individual, for example honesty. How to judge morality can fluctuate between different cases. Intentions and benefits to the group or individual are taking into account. In this case, where we are seeing high school dropouts as a problem, morality would depend on the individual and taking consideration the benefits for them and society in this case. I believe that graduating would benefit the individual and society in the long run because they would be setting themselves up to be more successful.

Reply to: Freedom?
4 years 8 months ago

I believe that your opinion is strongly emphasized and that your summary is clearly explained, well done! Interestingly enough, you seem to be a deontologist by what you are saying, as you are focusing more on the action that is being done to Mr. Badawi and how they are stripping him of his freedoms of speech and religion, which you have stated is morally wrong. Using Kant’s principle of ends, you can argue that everyone should be treated as an end and not as a means and that there should ultimately be mutual respect among all people. Consequently, Mr. Badawi’s rights of freedom of speech and religion should be valued and respected, as it is a moral duty to respect all people as we would respect ourselves, making it immoral not to do so.

4 years 8 months ago

Excellent job at getting your point across, your position on this matter is indeed a strong one. As you mentioned, your position on this issue is indeed that of a utilitarian, specifically that of an act utilitarian, as you are examining the consequences of smoking for the collective, and ultimately banning smoking would maximize everyone’s happiness, as they would no longer be affected by it such as no longer running the risk of developing lung cancer or watching others they know and love dying from such a disease. By what you are stating as an act utilitarian, you seem to be following Bentham’s principle of utility, which basically states that consequences do indeed matter, as actions that promote happiness/pleasure are indeed moral and actions that promote unhappiness/pain are therefore immoral.

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