The Emergency to Learn

by K-J on September 19, 2016 - 10:38am

The emergency to learn

I was clearly not as familiar as I thought with the term "race". I had a very focussed idea on this subject and I had never thought of the million ways we could approach it. I knew about this way of dividing people into categories, but I quickly realized and learned about those categories that we call race, and the fact that they may be illogical.

One of the main thing that I realized was not common to me is the geographical perspective of races. In other words, I was not conscious about the fact that races were based on pretty much colors and that it was not making any sense. As we saw in class, according to the five races that are typically used in surveys and stuff, we classify people from some part of the world with other that are living completely elsewhere and that most of the time have a totally different culture. 

The fact that we keep on going with the classification of humans is something that seem awful to me considering the fact that we are not even able to do so with a little bit of coherence. According to Diamonds, a more proper way of doing it would be to take into consideration much more mutable genes when we classify people into races. In other words, we would have to take into account facts that are more relevant. It would give a lot more credibility to the issue if we were considering more than one single difference, or more significant differences to classify people into various specific group. It has to deal with as many genes’ differentiation as possible (Diamonds, 1994, Para. 41). For sure, this argument seems pretty plausible to me. Races as they are today, are just weak. We cannot relate on groups that exist just because people in it seem similar on the outside, but are actually pretty different on the inside.

However, thinking about the solution brought by Diamonds about grouping people according to more genetic evidence, the problem may still persist. Despite the fact that racism is now more known and less taboo, social construction are so strong and hard to break that we will have to work hard to change the perception of people about those small differences that seem so big between people. I try to be optimistic about that, but unfortunately I have a hard time imagining today’s world with no racial generalizations based on what the eye see. Sadly, visual aspect of people are what the human’s eye see first, but I truly hope that this is something we can improve. Don’t you think the time to evolved and forget about old false information that has been teach when the world was still ignorant of true origin of humans’ differences has come?

Word count: 471 words

Diamond, J. (2016, Winter). Race Without Color. In A. Nouvet (Ed.), Anthropology 381-101-LA: The Myth of Race and the Reality of Racism. Saint-Lambert, QC: Champlain.




I think it is very interesting how you discuss the concept of learning about race and racism, determining that it is the limited knowledge base and understanding of the term that lead to racism. This made me do some self reflection, and realize that often my view of different races and race is based on the assumptions other people have, or a modified definition that conflicts with the truth. In my opinion your argument that we define race based on what we have been taught/ told/ heard is true, however you mention that “racism is now more known and less taboo”. I wonder if the fact that racism is now more talked about and covered in media further supports people's bias ideas of race and racism rather than diminishing such feelings. How should we educate future generations to change social perceptions of race? I think it is important that you discuss how people should learn about race, if that is in fact the issue at hand. What is the most unbiased and truthful interpretation that we should be teaching and learning? Overall, a very interesting and thought out argument, and I really appreciate the new perspective this post allowed me to gain, and how it kept me thinking long after I had finished reading it!

I understand exactly where you are coming from here. Nowadays there are still so many people who just refuse to believe that people can be similar to themselves simply because they are not of similar race. However, to refute your point "Don't you think time has evolved...," I do believe that the human race as a whole is on a much better track in terms of equality and tolerance. I do believe that, as you inferred, we as a whole are facing an uphill battle due to our ancestors and the time period they lived in when equality was not quite as common, but if we all band together as a whole and show some civil decency, then this world will be able to focus on race as more of a difference that brings us together, rather than tears us apart, and that is a world that we all as inhabitants can get behind! I enjoyed reading your perspective and good luck in your future learnings!

Nicholas Insana
September 19, 2016
“The Emergency to Learn” By: “K-J”
After reading the preview to this blog I realized that racism is a huge topic throughout the world and everyone including myself can relate to. To me, color means nothing, it’s what peoples actions are and how they handle certain situations. Color should not ever effect a persons judgement on someone else and nowadays that’s what happens. I agree with this post when “K-J” says that race is our way of dividing people into categories. Why are people being put into categories in the first place? People have more to them than just the color of their skin or the language they speak.

I chose to take a look at your article, because title really caught my eye and I agree that we have to learn about race and racism. After reading it, I came to the conclusion that I too had a very limited definition of race. I now realize that defining a race as color of skin can be misleading as it groups people that have very different cultures together. I don't think that people should be classified by color but by their actions and culture, that is, assuming we need to classify human beings. Do you think that the concept of ''race'' is actually useful to humanity? I think that all it did was cause problems and divisions throughout humanity.

Your article caught my attention because I also agree that it is an emergency to learn about the term "race" and what it truly means. I agree that we should not classify people based on the geographical area that they came from. We should not classify people from their facial structure, skin color or any physical characteristics. Instead people should be classified from their genetics and other characteristics that cannot be seen from the outside. It is true that although people may look similar to one another in a race, they may be very different on the inside, they may have different cultures or religions, they may be very different on the inside. In my opinion it is not right to classify based on physical characteristics.
Classifying people based on "race" caused many stereotypical issues. Classifying people based on genetics may cause less problems but will definitely not get rid of all of the problems. In my opinion everyone is different, we should not classify people into different categories at all, it only causes more and more social issues.

About the author