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How Inequality Is Perpetuated In Belizean Society

861 words - 4 pages

The word race when applied to one’s personal or historical being (tribe, clan, linage) is barely 500 years old. The word in its prior existence of defining or grouping a humans was strictly a related to a contest. As people began migrating north and west, it was a race amongst early explore to claim colonize the westernize world. Ism when applied to race can only exist when one group identified by race, holds an unequal amount of wealth, land or power than another group, which generate substantial resources and produce that marginalize, and exclude the disadvantage group from achieving or competing with the dominate group. The term ethnicity means the national or cultural group in which one ...view middle of the document...

The two largest groups are the Creoles, English-speaking or Creole-speaking blacks and people of mixed African and European heritage, and the Mestizos, Spanish-speaking people of mixed Mayan and Spanish European (Mortimer, 1992). Smaller groups included the Garifuna and the various Maya peoples. (Mortimer, 1992). According to Mortimer (1992), the themes that dominates the history of Belize: the outward struggle to establish and maintain an English-speaking nation in an area dominated by Hispanic peoples and culture, and the inward interaction between groups of different races and ethnic backgrounds.
Colonialism created a pattern of under development where Belize relied only on forestry instead of developing the land which created poverty and hardship for the workers and their families (Leslie, 1997). Leslie (1997) emphasized that when the economy does not improve, other aspects such as of life - social, political, cultural and educational - do not improve. In addition, Belize was a society divided by race, class, religion, where they lived, occupation and because communications were bad throughout the colony.
The first instance of racism developed when African was used as slaves in Belize. The colonial masters used mostly women and children to do the domestic work in their homes and raised their children. Other slaves worked as sailors, blacksmiths, nurses, and bakers (Mortimer, 1992). However a minority held jobs requiring a high level of skill and most of the young women continued in domestic work while the young men became woodcutters (Mortimer, 1992) Each group was encouraged to hate and fear the others, to feel as if they were better than every other group. They were taught to respect and identify...

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