Race, Ethnicity, & Culture


Race, Ethnicity, & Culture

Beliefs about race and ethnicity influence our cultures, politics, and relationships.  What is race?  What is ethnicity?  This group explores those concepts.

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Discussion Forum

Trump, America's First White President

Started by Grinning Cat. Last reply by Donald R Barbera Sep 12. 2 Replies

Latino Reaction to Arpaio Pardon

Started by Ruth Anthony-Gardner. Last reply by Donald R Barbera Aug 27. 1 Reply

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Comment by Daniel W on January 4, 2015 at 9:08am

Elegant, historically incorrect portraits.  One artist's Rembrant-style portraits of black subjects.  CNN

This prompted me to think about "concerns" that the next James Bond might be Idris Elba, and disingenuous complaints that James Bond was "always written to be Scottish" - even though the only Scottish actor to play Bond, of many Bonds, was Sean Connery. 

Culture.  Race.  Ethnicity.  None are engraved in stone.

Comment by Daniel W on November 26, 2014 at 10:15pm

Kind of a disappointment - I hoped that the younger generation was more open.  We keep reading that is the case.

Comment by Natalie A Sera on September 24, 2014 at 3:21pm

Actually, SB, the things that they have publicly identified as being Neanderthal have to do with the immune system, not any visible characteristics. And for me, because I already know I'm Ashkenazi Jewish, it's interesting to find out that in addition to Northern European, which I expected, there was no Eastern European (which people expect Jews to be), and there was Mediterranean and West Asian, which could include places as far-flung as North Africa, Israel (expected) and Iran, Afghanistan or Pakistan. So I'm a Heinz 57, in a way, but in a different way from what people usually expect. So what do I put down as my "race" or ethnic group in the next census? :-)

Comment by Daniel W on September 23, 2014 at 10:39pm
Eddie, I did watch the documentary. Thanks for the link - I enjoyed watching it. Somehow, people identify as one thing, then discover it's not nearly that clear, and then further back, everyone is connected. And, by DNA, we are 99.9% the same. So... why are people so convinced people are so different from each other?

Natalie, that's really cool to learn that! There was a thought in my mind that my mix would be widespread, which I thought would be interesting. But it is what it is. I wonder, what traits I have that are Neanderthal? Maybe the eye color - hazel?
Comment by Daniel W on September 23, 2014 at 9:40pm
Eddie, you are right, the test is pricy. I did it out of curiosity. I cant say I learned a lot about my ethnicity. Or maybe I did. I will check the link you provided. It sounds interesting.
Comment by Eddie E. Hicks Sr. on September 23, 2014 at 2:01pm

That test is quite pricy. I'm going to give it a try one day. Seems very interesting. Did anyone see the documentary The Human Family Tree? They DNA tested a large group of New Yorkers. The results are very surprising. See link http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/human-family-tree/

Comment by Natalie A Sera on September 21, 2014 at 4:28am

Some people will be more hodge-podge than others, even among people that look European. I got 55% Mediterranean that includes Sardinia, Italy, Greece, the Balkans, the Levant and North Africa. Then there was 21% North European, which is Scandinavian and German. And there is 2.1% Neanderthal. And also 21% West Asian, which includes Western India, as well as the Fertile Crecscent and Arabia. So although I LOOK European, My ancestry is 76% non-European. Which goes to say that genotype is not phenotype!

Comment by Daniel W on September 20, 2014 at 7:51pm

Currently reading: The History of White People. By Nell Painter.

Amazon Summary:

"Telling perhaps the most important forgotten story in American history, eminent historian Nell Irvin Painter guides us through more than two thousand years of Western civilization, illuminating not only the invention of race but also the frequent praise of “whiteness” for economic, scientific, and political ends. A story filled with towering historical figures, The History of White People closes a huge gap in literature that has long focused on the non-white and forcefully reminds us that the concept of “race” is an all-too-human invention whose meaning, importance, and reality have changed as it has been driven by a long and rich history of events."

Comment by Daniel W on September 20, 2014 at 2:25pm

I sent off a DNA test to the National Geographic "Genographic" DNA project. The results came back

◾ 43% Northern European
◾ 38% Mediterranean
◾ 18% Southwest Asian

In addition, it showed
2.3% Neanderthal
2.7% Deinsovian

This is probably typical for many of us "Heinz 57" Euro-Americans. I was a bit surprised that it did not break it down into finer ethnic categories, but on reading further, it seems Europe is such a hodge-podge that those are not possible. From Scandinavians / Vikings migrating as far south as Italy, Romans migrating / conquering as far north as Scotland, Celtics from Scotland to Spain, and Huns contributing their part, it almost seems like there is no such thing as localized European ethnicity. Maybe some pockets, such as Basque Spain.

Of course, more far flung places would have more differences from one another - such as, say someone from Ethiopia vs. someone from Easter Island, or Alaska vs. Aboriginal Australian. I don't know what to make of this, except as always, we are all human, with a little spiced up DNA from other hominids to boot.

Comment by The Flying Atheist on September 20, 2014 at 2:25pm

Yes, that's the photo, Daniel. 


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