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Race And Your Community Essay

1814 words - 7 pages

Race and Your CommunityAbstractIn this paper, I discuss and examine social relationships with a focus on racism and the theories that augment the latter. In particular, I will discuss the social identity theory using my personal experiences as a pivotal point in giving concrete examples. The term social identity is a concept in social psychology that defines the "we" aspect of an individual's self-concept (Myers, 2005). Together with the self-concept, our social identity is the reason for why people define themselves in groups or congregations while maintaining their social identity.Race and Your CommunityOften times, we only notice ourselves as different when we are surrounded by people who are homogeneous, be it due to age, gender and most importantly color. Growing up as a kid, being black was an issue for me and for the rest of the kids of my age. It was those individuals who were white or Asian that had a more colorful life, a less complicated. Though the end of the slave trade brought African American individuals a chance to ascend in that social ladder that only whites once had access to, for a while we thought that racism would eventually be wiped out completely in this world. Apparently, we spoke too soon.Upon examining the members of the community where I live, I immediately noticed the similarities and differences that we had in terms of physicality. Currently I live on base a military community. Though gender and age is very much prominent in examining my fellow community dwellers, the color of the skin was the one that I first looked into without consciously doing so. More importantly, I rarely saw the vastness in number of blacks but I paid importance to the few whites in the community. It was not because I had something against them from the get go but it was interesting to see that the majority of the blacks were at a lower rank then the whites. On the military housing the separate the communities by rank in the service. I immediately notice that the most of the enlisted soldiers were blacks and most of the officers soldiers were white. To me it was no different then living outside the gates of the base. I remember one time when I happen to visit a white community and I suddenly felt out of place. I felt as though I was being examined so thoroughly and all I could think about was to just leave the place the moment that I was done with my business. Come to think of it, this is probably what the white people of my community felt at some point (or maybe a lot of times) since they are outnumbered by blacks in this community of military housing.Turner (as cited by Myers, 2005) proposed the social identity theory to explain our experiences of "we-ness" in groups. According to Turner and Tajfel (as cited by Myers, 2005), their observations yielded the following prevalent social behaviors: (1) we categorize: By putting ourselves and other people into social categories, we find it easier to group humankind. This is the reason I label...

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