Race as a social Construct/White Privilege

RACE AS A SOCIAL CONSTRUCT/WHITE PRIVILEGE LECTURER: Which of Graves 5 pillars of racist thought do you see as most common or least challenged in your own ideas about race or in the U.S. more generally? How is that pillar reinforced in day-to-day experiences?
The issues of race and racist are ones that are commonly discussed and have become part of public discourse. But reading through the commentary by Graves critically, one is tempted to believe that the whole idea of race and racist have not been well understood for years. There are a number of ways that Graves tries to justify the position that race has suffered from the myth of society for several years. One of the ways is by the use of the five pillars of racist thought. Of the five, the one that I find as most common is the claim that “races have genetically determined differences in athletic and musical ability” (p. 14). The reason this is said to be the most common is that there seem to be a lot of real life experiences and facts that seem to justify this position. In terms of athletics for example, it is common knowledge that most Olympic Games 100 meter gold medalists that the U.S. has produced in both men and women categories are Blacks.
The same can be made for great players and sports personalities like Pele of Brazil for soccer, Michael Jordan for basketball, Serena Sisters for tennis, Tiger Woods for gold, Mohammed Ali for boxing, and several others. Speak of music and the list will continue from Michael Jackson to Beyonce, all of who are Blacks. Having said all these, it is important to differentiate “between the biologically and socially defined concepts of race” (p. 14) as Graves advocates. This is because there can be a fundamental social explanation as to why there are more Blacks seen in active athletics and music than Whites. One of the explanations could be that those that take the lead in these areas have a positive social influence on others, causing them to learn from them and also become achievers in the same.
Work Cited
Graves, Joseph. The Race Myth: Why We Pretend Race Exists in America. New York: Plume. 2005. Print.

You Might Also Like