race stuff





In this essay I will argue that the key to end racism is to understand race and ideology and how this two concepts relate to each other.
Appiah claims that race does not exist. He uses scientific methods to prove that individuals from different groups of people have no greater genetic differences between them than the genetic differences in individuals from the same group of people. He writes: “…human genetic variability between the populations of Africa or Europe or Asia is not much greater than within those populations…” With This he is trying to demonstrate that if there is no biological difference between populations, except for those differences due to the habitat in which a certain population has lived for many years. Therefore he proves that there is no accurate meaning of the word race.
Appiah uses in his discussions about race the writings of W. E. DuBois, his technique is to cite an argument made by DuBois, and give sufficient proof to refute it. He does this with several statements, and concludes that race is a misconception.
Although he divides the world population in races, and gives answers to racism, he does not give an explicit meaning to the word race. He uses history, culture and languages, to form several groups of people that he calls races.
Loewen’s discusses 12 American history books, and focuses in the fact that all of them try to hide racism against black people throughout American history. He shows that even the great forefathers of the United States were racist, that all of them owned slaves and that they did not consider Black people to be equal. He also writes about the many years of beatings and lynching that black people endured, even years after the Reconstruction.
Appiah and Brace use scientific data to prove biologically that is impossible to categorize humankind in races.
Later in the debate, Appiah says that the existence of racism does not imply that race has to exist, he mentions the Salem witch trials, in which witches were haunted down and sentenced to death because they were supposedly doing witchcraft, to prove his point; he says that although witches do not exist, they were persecuted for witchcraft. What he means by this cite is that although race does no exist, people are still being persecuted by racist individuals.
In another part of the debate, he also refutes the idea that race is a group of people with the same socio-historical background; he says that if that statement is true, then his family would have to be a race because they have the same socio-historical background.
The most important reason why people try to define race is to understand racism and to see if it is justifiable or not. Racism has been in human nature since the beginning of time and it is a constant problem in modern cultures, that’s why through better understanding of how it works, we might be able to finish the history of hate and violence that racism has produced.
Racism is the manifestation of the false belief that races are different. Or in the beliefs of a single person which ca be manifested when for example: some white people think that they are a superior race and they can treat others differently.
To better understand this phenomenon, we need to know what ideology means, since ideology is the basic source of racism.
Eagleton gives several definitions of ideology in his book “Ideology”, I will cite some of his definitions, and based on the corrections made to the definitions, I will formulate my own definition of ideology to better understand racism.
 “A body of ideas characteristic to a particular social group or class”: This definition is very accurate, but as history tells us, the greatest ideologists are the ones that defy the ideas and beliefs of the vast majority.
 “Forms of thought motivated by social interests”: It is true that everyone’s thinking is influenced by social pressures, but this definition implies that every belief is social-based, which is certainly not true.
Having said that, a new definition of ideology can be made by combining these two definitions. I would define ideology as the ideas and beliefs of an individual person based on his own social, cultural, religious and geographical background.
With this definition present, racism becomes a personal belief that