"Earlier, simpler models of the relationship between immigration, identity, and assimilations tied together identity, political loyalty and economic integration. Becoming American meant learning the language, voting, adopting the culture, and achieving economic security for oneself and social mobility for one's children." "It is the continuing discrimination and prejudice of whites and ongoing structural and interpersonal racism that create an inability among Americans, and ultimately West Indian, blacks to ever 'forget about race.' Whites' behavior and beliefs about race and their culture of racist behaviors create the very expectations of discomfort that whites complain about in their dealings with their black neighbors, coworker and friends. " Waters, Mary. "Immigrants and American Race Relations." (1999)—
Argument: "Culture and vulgar" racism between blacks and white in America is preventing the complete integration of both groups. New immigrants of color are endangered in accepting the color line, or division, set by the relationship between blacks and white and thus perpetuating the delay of their assimilation and success in America.
Waters states that "...the major division in American society will continue to be between people we historically thought of as white and those who are nonwhite" (Waters 339). Waters relates this with immigration and how color is a major factor when creating guidelines in race relations in the U.S. Waters goes on to argue that because West Indians have the status of immigrant, they have a better chance of succeeding in the U.S only because they are not identified as African-Americans. African-Americans have become sort of a lost cause in the eyes of white Americans, so seeing a black person who does not associate with the lower class, makes that person right away favorable. After a few generations though, West Indians will not have the convenience of declaring they are immigrants and will end up being associated with African-Americans, only because of their skin. African-Americans do not have the privilege of ever reforming their status in the U.S, since according to Waters, "...what is really needed...is for whites to no longer see blacks as the 'other' but rather as the 'self'" (Waters 338). Waters argues that whites need to understand the individuality of African-Americans instead of grouping the altogether, that way whites can come to comprehend the inner struggles of discrimination African-Americans suffer on a daily basis.
Overall: This article can associate with Professor Matsumoto's lecture on Asian Americans: The Model Minority? In her lecture, Professor Matsumoto talks about how Asian Americans have become a model minority in the U.S after years of discrimination by white America. This group has overcome its oppression and found success, something that white America targets African-Americans with, since African-Americans are still regarded as being an unsuccessful group in not being able to let go of their victimization and find success, like Asian-Americans have.
Feagin, Joe R. and Melvin P. Sikes. "The Continuing Significance of Race."
Argument: Racism is perpetuated and institutionalized carried over from the past with the institution of slavery. Many whites deny any racism against blacks. This comes from a lack of understanding, a lack of empathetic thinking, and lack of experience dealing with discrimination. Whites have not been targeted because they have the "power and resources" that can keep blacks inferior to them. Books and research refuting the decline of significance of race and racism against blacks on all class levels is rarely published. And there are ingrained stereotypes of blacks that perpetuate the misperception of blacks by whites and continues a subtle discrimination. Yet, however subtle, the discrimination and racist acts add up. Limiting group mobility -social, economic, and political - for blacks keeps institutionalized racism alive. It is to protect white domination. Race continues to be significant, especially for black Americans who feel the blunt force of racism still alive today.
Overall: It is important to recognize that there continues to exist racial prejudice. Coupled with a somewhat faint but still present notion that being American means being white, blacks on all class levels are pushed to the down the racial, social, economic, and political hierarchy. The job call back rates for blacks, the real estate showings, avoidance, and verbal and physical attacks that Professor Ortiz discussed in her lecture are all examples of clear anti-black actions. We may like to think that we have moved past the brutal racism we saw in the days of slavery, but we must recognize that on some level, Americans still continue to find race significant. Whites continue to use their domination in every institution to perpetuate the white domination. This is because since historic times, whites have had resources and power, which they continue to hold on to. We must move past the negative stereotypes and start to deem race as less of an important quality in an American.
Lipstiz, George. "The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: Racialized Social Democracy and the 'White'
Problem in American Studies." (1995)
Argument: Whiteness originated through "slavery and segregation, by immigration restriction and Indian policy, by conquest and colonialism." Also argues that cultural practices like "wild-west shows, minstrel shows, racist images in advertising and Hollywood films institutionalized racism." Says that "race is a cultural construct, but one with sinister structural causes and consequences". By encouraging slavery and restricting naturalized citizenship to white immigrants when European settlers first arrived in America, they set up the foundation for a possessive investment in whiteness
Published in September of 1995, this article looks back on the oppression of African Americans during the late 1900s. The topic of this text is to reveal the discrimination and imbalance among whites and blacks. The question that the article tries to answer is why we are still unequal today and what has caused the discrimination of minority races. The thesis is: "Although cross-ethnic identification and pan-ethnic antiracism in culture, politics, and economics have often interrupted and resisted racialized white supremacist notions of American identity, from colonial days to the present, successful political coalitions serving dominant interests have often relied on exclusionary concepts of whiteness to fuse unity among otherwise antagonistic individuals and groups".
Overall: White privilege, white skin often gives you better access to federal aid, or better treatment. Whiteness exists because we say it exists, it is a social construct that we have created through federal, state, and municipal laws and cultural traditions. The United States has a very long history of white dominance, and so each new racial group that immigrates here is immediately compared against the white population. Argues structural racism occurs to accomplish some social goal, and therefore discrimination and public racism changes over time to fit the historical context. When we needed cheap labor, black slaves were imported, and to justify the enslavement of human beings, the idea of inherent differences based on skin color was created. When Asians were perceived to be taking jobs from white people, immigration quotas and restrictions were created.
"The People, Respondent, v. George W. Hall, Appellant, 1854."—
George Hall murdered someone, and a Chinese man witnessed the murder. In 1854, the CA Supreme Court ruled that no Chinese person could testify against a white person in a CA court.
Argument: The intent behind the act was to remove people of white America from the corruptive influences of lower races and class. The article fervently claims that Murray's judgment stripped every non-white person the right to live the life of a citizen and participate in the American government.
In 1854, The California Supreme Court ruled that no foreign person could testify against a white person in court. Chief Judge Hugh Murrary sided with George Hall, who had been "convicted of murder upon the testimony of a Chinese witness". He further added that Chinese were dangerous and clearly an inferior race. In the reading, the words "Black, Mulatto, Indian and White person" were called into question, "whether the Legislature adopted them as generic terms, or intended to limit their application to specific types of human species."
Overall: The reading ties into Professor Decker's lecture ("Race Matters") on how biology relates to race. He undermined the relation between race and biology in stating that race is a social construct that is always changing according to the social context. However, historically, physical indicators of race was considered to be linked in a direct way to psychological or intellectual characteristics. Thus, the connection made between race and biology legitimized a "hierarchy of racially distinct group with inferiority or superiority." Following this statement, the argument made in support of George Hall (that nonwhite races are intellectually undeveloped contrary to civilized whites) falls short of the claims made against it (that biology is unrelated to race). Each "color" becomes a social construct relevant to one's standing in society and, consequently, their rights as outlined by those with higher authority. This characterization of non-white races as inferior species relates to the need for white America to feel as if they had to protect themselves from the influences of those below them. The ingrained mindset that one's race determines his intelligence, moral judgment, and ability to advance yields the discriminatory nature of political and social institutions.
"Your Excellency will discover, however, that we are as much allied to the African race and the red man as you are yourself, and that as far as the aristocracy of skin is concerned, ours might compare with many of the European races; nor do we consider that your Excellency, as a Democrat, will make us believe that the framers of your declaration of rights ever suggested the propriety of establishing an aristocracy of skin. I am a naturalized citizen, your Excellency, of Charleston, South Carolina, and a Christian, too; and so hope you will stand corrected in your assertion "that none of the Asiatic class" as you are pleased to term them, have applied for benefits under our naturalization act. I could point out to you numbers of citizens, all over the whole continent, who have taken advantage of your hospitality and citizenship, and I defy you to say that our race have ever abused that hospitality or forfeited their claim on this or any of the governments of South America, by an infringement on the laws of the countries into which they pass. You find us peculiarly peaceable and orderly. It does not cost your state much for our criminal prosecution. We apply less to your courts for redress, and so far as I know, there are none who are a charge upon the state, as paupers." (11) Asing, Norman. "To His Excellency Governor Bigler, 1852."
Argument: That the Governor's conceptions of Asian Americans, which is addressed to and in line with a white conservative citizenry, are flawed. He asserts the Americanization of the Asian immigrant population is progressed and the governor's conception that Asian immigrants are still foreign is therefore untrue. He also argues that racially those consanguineous with Asing hold a place similar in hierarchy to that of Caucasians. He also claims that the founding document does not establish a racial hierarchy in the public sphere. Finally, Asing puts forth that those images of delinquency are false, and that Asian-Americans have an upstanding character history. Chinese are not a threat to California, nor to the US. Asing states that the Chinese have to come to the California and have migrated in such high numbers for the same reason many other groups do. He also states that Bigler's arguments do not coincide with the beliefs of the US and that Chinese should not be look down on because many of them come to work and are as educated as many Americans.
Overall: Asing's mention of the Constitution as color blind, at least with respect to Asian Americans, is a basis for much antiracist thought in the United States. Asing's focus on justifying the Asian race as one that has economic success, patriotic fervor, and civil tendency contributes to the Asian model minority status. He is faced with anti-immigrant sentiment and the stereotype as the "perpetual foreigner."
Pascoe, Peggy. "Miscegenation Law, Court Cases, and Ideologies of 'Race'
in Twentieth-CenturyAmerica." (1999)
Argument: Pascoe's argument is that "American racialism was challenged by several emerging ideologies, all of which depended on a modern split between biology and culture."
This article examines modern social science, miscegenation law, and modern American racial ideologies. It focuses on the emergence of new racial ideologies as the concept of race as biological is continually disputed. Citing numerous court cases. In her discussion of Kirby v. Kirby (1922), Pascoe explains that "although most Americans are sure they know 'race' when they see it, very few can offer a definition of the term" (465). The judge decided that Kirby was Caucasian by hearing where his family is from, but the judge assumed that Mayellen was Black just by looking at her appearance. This case illustrates the idea of race as biology/physical characteristics rather than as a cultural phenomenon. The two contrasting ideas (race as biology vs. race as a social construct) led to legal conflict. At the same time, new ideas of "color blindness" emerged as a way to eradicate racism.
Overall: This passage touches on many of the class' key questions such as: how is race defined? Pascoe also examines one of the class' main ideas of race as a social construct. Although it is becoming more widely known that race is not, in fact, biological, many people still base their classifications of race on physical characteristics. Racial ideology shapes and impacts the lives of many people. Although we think that racial stereotypes are based on a person's ethnicity, they are really created based on appearance, skin color, etc. This idea of race as socially constructed has been one of the main topics of the course.
Thornton, John. "The Process of Enslavement and the Slave Trade."
Argument: The pre-existing slave trade in Africa was a very complex system, which the internal dynamics of the region affected greatly. To consider the reasoning behind the slave trade, one must look at many different aspects of Africa such as the motives for warring states and the influence of new technology. Although Europeans influenced this trade, there is no definitive link between the (then) emerging European slave trade and the pre-existing African slave trade (aka just because Europeans got involved doesn't mean they made slavery happen in Africa).
John Thornton is someone who goes on to discredit beliefs that Europeans forced Africans to become slaves. In this passage, he examines the roles that Africa's elite played in developing the slave trade along with the Europeans. He mentions that Africa already had a social hierarchy in place. Certain groups had certain political or commercial power over others. Another important thing to consider is that among these pre-established groups there were already wars going on. This was due to the regions Africans belonged to. Despite them all living in Africa, they were still separate because specific regions had a particular language and customs that differed fr other regions. This in turn created tension and conflicts among themselves. Wars led to conquest, which led to enslavement. This is where enslavement began, so when the Europeans came looking for slaves, those in power did not see anything wrong with making profit what they saw as their property. Throughout the passage, Thornton makes it very clear that Europeans were only buyers of slaves but had no direct influence in how enslavement began.
Overall: This reading contrasts the notion that Europeans forced Africans to be slaves against their will. Many people always blame whites for the enslavement of Africans. It is hard to think that people from their own skin color would enslave each other. In a broader sense, this can depict how, despite belonging to one country, there are differences among regions that divide the country. For example, Chinese customs differ from Korean or Japanese customs. In the same way that Mexicans also differ from Cubans or Costa Ricans. Many times, people assume that because people come from a particular country, they must all be the same. This leads to stereotypes that all Asians are smart and will be engineers or doctors. It becomes easy to ignore that a country is divided and consist of many different groups and elements. In addition, that within each country, there can also be tension and wars and it may not be the white man's fault.
James, C. L. R. The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L'Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution.
Argument: The success of Santo Domingo as a colony, as well as its close ties with the French Revolution, and L'Ouverture's own prowess made the revolution of the slaves possible. Thanks to the British's jealousy.
C. L. R. James examines the slave trade in Santo Domingo and the revolution that was sparked by both the French Revolution and Toussaint L'Ouverture. Santo Domingo had a huge presence in the world market due to the success of their colonies and the slaves who worked on them. Production was so great that exported materials usually numbered in the hundreds of millions. Other nations, Britain in particular, grew envious of the wealth of the colonies and began to advocate the abolition of slavery. In addition to British instigating, a revolutionary caused by the French Revolution began to spread throughout the island and to its slaves. As time passed revolts become more and more frequent. There was one thing that kept the revolts from being completely successful, and that was the lack of a strong leader. Eventually a leader was found in the form of 45 year old Toussaint L'Ouverture. He far surpassed the average slave in both mind and body. He gained experience in administration, authority, and intercourse through his post as steward of livestock. Through reading he was able to maneuver expertly between local parties in Santo Domingo and international forces. All of this aided L'Ouverture in his quest to free the slaves in Santo Domingo.
By 1789 San Domingo had become the market of the New Word. Consequently, it also became France's largest source of export trade. Their success was insurmountable, even by the British. Because of this French success and wealth, Britain took action in hopes of elimination San Domingo as the market of the New World. In this passage, James claims that since it's inception by the British, the concept of the abolition of the slave-trade has always had hidden intentions. From this passage it is clear that the British only howled abolition because in doing so, they could destroy San Domingo's economy and along with it, the French economy. The British did succeed. The idea of abolition sparked insurrections in the West Indies and brought about the San Domingo Revolution in which Toussaint Louverture, the leader of the Revolution, transformed their society of slaves into an independent society of Haitians.
Overall: This passage closely relates to some of the implications made by Malcolm X. Essentially, the British used the idea of "abolition of slavery" for their own personal gains. In the same way, we've come to understand from such readings as "The Ballot or the Bullet" and "Kickin' Reality, Kickin' Ballistics", that African-Americans have been notoriously used by whites in order to make gains (either politically, economically, or both). It is also important to consider how the Haitian Revolution shook the institution of slavery not just in the West Indies, but also all of the U.S. From it's inception, abolition of slavery was not explicitly meant to abolish slavery; its supporters often had other intentions. One example of such a use of abolition of slavery is Abe Lincoln's abolishment of slavery during the American Civil War; he intended to spark insurrections in the South. Very few African-Americans actually gained their freedom.
Douglass, Frederick. Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave. (1845)Cesar
Linda, the slave girl, addresses her audience of upper-middle class white women in the north formally and in great distress. Her introduction of "but, o, ye" has biblical connotations and also suggests an educated tone. Linda discusses ideas like purity, protection of the home, and marriage, which are all topics women, especially in the north, are sensitive to. Throughout her narrative Jacobs appeals to women's emotions and desire for purity to evoke sympathy of the slave girl and the emotional, physical, and psychological violence young slave girls must endure. Linda emphasizes losing her innocence because of slavery and how her idea of freedom is the freedom to choose a man to marry. The exclamation mark after "severely" exemplifies Linda's plea with her audience to understand her suffering and hardships during slavery.
Overall: Jacobs' narrative demonstrates the violence young slave girls were forced to endure in slavery. Often times they suffered not only sexual harassment from their masters, but also psychological violence with always living in terror and paranoia. This article is an example of the many injustices discussed in section that slaves dealt with. Slavery was a violent institution that set the stage for many years of racism. Slavery has residual effects even today, as whiteness still remains the "dominant" and most "privileged" race. Blacks still live with racism in many of today's institution like labor, education, and housing.
"To say now that American was right, and England was wrong, is exceedingly easy. Everybody can say; the dastard, not less than the noble brave, can flippantly discant of the tyranny of England towards the American Colonies. It is fashionable to do so; but there was a time when, to pronounce against England, and in favor f the cause of the colonies, tried men's souls. They who did so were accounted in their day, plotters of mischief, agitators and rebels, dangerous men. To side with the right, against the wrong, with the weak against the strong, and with the oppressed against the oppressor! here lies the merit, and the one which, of all others, seems unfashionable in our day. The cause of liberty may be stabbed by the men who glory in the deeds of your fathers." Page 90 Douglass, Frederick. "Oration, Delivered in Corinthian Hall." (1852)
Argument: America is a hypocritical nation, and such is made evident through its preservation of slavery. It is quick to celebrate liberty while a considerable portion of the population is still in "shambles."
Douglass delivered a 4th of July oration in which he promoted the abolishment of slavery. Douglass explains that problem of the present is that existence of slavery in the United States contradicts celebrating American independence because many African-Americans suffer under the bonds of slavery. Douglass questions if the people were trying to mock him by inviting him speak on Independence day by saying "The rich inheritance of justice, liberty, prosperity and independence, bequeathed by your fathers, is shared by you, not by me. The sunlight that brought life and healing to you, has brought stripes and death to me. This Fourth July is yours, not mine. You may rejoice, I must mourn." (93) Furthermore, Douglass question the legitimacy of slavery in the constitution. Our own founding fathers adopted the constitutions, which according to Douglass, "defy(-ies) the presentation of a single pro-slavery clause in it." Overall, I believe the passage above sort of challenges the reader/listener to think back to the ideals of America and relate it to the necessary abolition of slavery.
OVERALL: The speech by Douglass was just one of many efforts by abolitionists to end slavery. Furthermore, the mindset of Douglass to instill american ideals to abolishing slavery carried on the movement to actually end slavery. On another note, Professor Sawyer presented a lecture about national identity and patriotism. In particular, he asked a question to the class, "How do we feel on 4th of July?" The options were: angry, proud, or concern; he may have asked this question so students could ponder if America has really been following the ideals of independence that our founding fathers hoped for.
Truth, Sojourner. "Ain't I a Woman?" (1851)—
Argument: Truth is talking about the differences between being a white woman and a black woman at this time. She is pointing out the irony of when men say women should be treated well. What they actually mean is white women should be treated well. She believes race should not make a difference. She deserves the same respect. Not only does she want women to be treated equally well among other women, but she also wants women to be just as respected as men. She speaks for equality, across race and gender. She deserves equal respect because she can do whatever any other man or woman can do, regardless of her own race and gender, and she believes the same for anyone else. Race and gender do not limit ability.
In Brenda Stevenson's "Latasha Harlins, Soon Ja Du, and Joyce Karlin...", Stevensons talks about the racial hierarchy that exists among women. Truth is asking why she is not treated like other women, specifically like white women. White women are supposed to be cared for while black women like Truth have to do hard labor, despite the fact that they are both women. In the Latasha Harlins case, Harlins was stripped of her femininity and was characterized as a rebellious, young, dangerous thief. Basically, she was seen as a thug since she was black. Soon Ja Du was showered with femininity. Du was Asian, motherly, and old. She is seen as tender and non-violent. This hierarchy played out during Truth's time and it continues to play out today.
Stanley Hayami, Nisei Son: His Diary, Letters, and Story from an American Concentration Camp to Battlefield, 1942-1945.
Argument: His diary concludes by pointing out how the Nisei had little to do with Japan, that they considered it as a foreign country populated with people which they do not feel any kinship for.
Stanley Hayami voices a sentiment felt by many Japanese-Americans that were sent to internment camps during WWII. He was part of a group that was sent in limbo. It is true when Stanley claims that there was no winning for "loyal" Japanese-Americans. The government did not care that most of the people relocated considered themselves purely American, not Japanese. The loyalty to the United States of America was strong and definitely emulated in Stanley's words. He would rather run away and start his own country than go to Japan and claim Japanese citizenship. Though they are Japanese-Americans, most felt no ties to Japan, rather to America. But because "Americans" considered them enemies, and the "Japanese" or isseis and kibeis also considered them traitors, these Japanese-Americans were left in limbo, with no country to grasp a hold of. It really did do damage to the Japanese-American psyche, and left many confused, angry, bitter, and hopeless.
Overall: This article shows the U.S. endorsing a blatant violation and denial of fundamental basic rights for U.S. citizens. However, the government justified it because they claimed they could not take any risks in times of war. They were only looking out for America. It is clear then that these Japanese-Americans were not considered American. Though from after the internment, the executive order was deemed unconstitutional, this incident has broader implications because it could happen again. It was close to occurring again after 9/11. The broader question is now what makes one American? How do we stop such acts from ever occurring again? There is a fundamental problem with the American government mindset if we still consider those that look like political enemies actual enemies. Those people that look like American enemies may feel as "American" as the one discriminating.
Kochiyama, Yuri. "Then Came the War." (1991)
During this time, most Japanese Americans had to leave their jobs, and they were moved to detention centers. Their money was frozen so it was impossible for them to go to another state. Yuri's family ended up in Arkansas, in a camp with army-type barracks and hundreds of people crammed within each hall. A few people were shot and killed trying to escape. Most people were just very confused about why they were being held, having done nothing wrong. People became ashamed of their heritage. Second and third generation Japanese Americans felt fully American and did not understand why they were now being considered Japanese. They called the camps "relocation centers" during their time there, but after the fact began to call them "concentration camps". Yuri stayed in the camp for two years. Afterwards, it was very hard to find work, and many people had lost their homes. After the war there was no more hysteria, but there was still intense racism towards people of Japanese descent. When the people left the camps, they were give written instructions from the government not to be seen in large groups with other Japanese people, not even in churches, and to not speak Japanese anymore. Yuri believes that the anti-Japanese sentiment of the time caused a lot of Japanese American women to marry outside of their race due to self hatred and wanting to separate from their Japanese identity.
Overall: The author explains that even though there was a constitution, constitutional rights can be taken away very easily. This experience ties into our course because it describes a very painful time in US history, where we legally segregated imprisoned American citizens based on their ancestral descent. This depicts how public perception and institutional racism play off of one another, as one grows the other grows in response, then the first grows again, and the other reciprocates, back and forth until things like this occur: the legal imprisonment of American citizens, who had been guaranteed rights under the constitution: their rights were taken of them due to nothing more than the color of their skin.
Kang, Jerry. "Thinking Through Internment: 12/7 and 9/11."
Argument: Similarity of treatment Japanese Americans after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and Arab Americans after the bombing of the World Trade Center. US needs to learn from its mistakes and prevent the mistreatment of minority groups. He focuses on this issue by raising the concept of racial prejudice preventing rational thinking.
He writes, while it may seem implausible to intern Arab Americans today that cutting their rights is still taking away their freedom. He writes "recall that the first step". Focus on the word "first". To refer to something as the first step implies that there will be steps after it. By mentioning the first step of the Japanese Americans' loss of freedom, Kang brings out how important it is to prevent this "first" step from occurring to the Arab Americans. By implying that there is a first step, he cautions against further steps. This warning draws on his major themes of racism and injustice. He writes that racial profiling allows for "those who look like" Arab Americans to be profiled in "retaliation". The word retaliation refers to fighting against a group of people. Kang writes "those who look like them" would be profiled in "retaliation" implying that they will be fought against or have revenge taken out on them. This would be a massive injustice whether they are of the same race or not but by adding the "look like", Kang creates an even bigger injustice. Not only did they not commit the crime but they also are not even of the same racial background. There is nothing tying these helpless citizens to the criminals. No reasoning behind their mistreatment except similar facial features. This similarity could be used to claim that a people are criminals or possibly criminals, despite no evidence. Asserting this would lead to the rejection of rational thought and the denial of Arab Americans and other Middle Eastern Americans' rights, showing Kang's concept of prejudice denying rational thought. Throughout this reading, Kang argues the need to learn from the mistakes the US made during World War II against the Japanese. He discusses the concept of racial prejudice and the themes of racism and injustice.
Overall: The main concept of Kang's work, racial prejudice preventing rational thought, has a major implication on our course. In our class, we talk about how racial prejudice has led to the disadvantage of certain racial groups. This article was used to discuss these negative Asian stereotypes. Asian Americans are seen, even to an extent today, as a perpetual foreigner. This viewpoint enables some to view the struggles of Asian Americans as less important. By reading this article, the class was able to consider the Asian Americans as more than an isolated case but rather, as an example of the bigger prejudice and racial thinking of American society.
Said, Edward W. "Islam As News." (1981)
Argument: Said first introduces the division between the Orientalist (Islamic views of the Middle East) and the Occident (the West, "our world"). He answers why Occidentalists regard Orientalists with hostility and fear, and delves into the religious, psychological and political reasons for Western reactions and portrayal of Muslims. Furthermore, in tracing the history between Christianity and Islam, Said uncovers why all the massacres, killings, and destructive frenzy had been attributed to Islam. There is an assumption that Said addresses concerning Islam: that it is tied to primitivity and backwardness. Worlds of the West, in its cultural identity, signifies progress. Furthermore, the wide, but incorrect use of Islam perpetuates the stereotype that Islam is "totalistic and makes no separation between church and state or between religion and everyday life." John Kifner's use of Islam in "News of the Week in Review" reinforces this religious ignorance. Said discredits the author's characterization of Islam as "simple, monolithic [and] totalitarian." In "Islam as News," Said addresses the work of anyone who teaches and writes about the Middle East, criticizes the ensemble of institutions in the West dealing with the region, and evaluates the style of thought marked by hierarchical binary relations between "Occident" and "Orient."
Overall: The reading ties back to lecture: "Middle East in American Imagination and Culture." In the lecture, Behdad evaluates the geopolitical significance of the Middle East since WWII, and the portrayal of Arabs and Muslims in popular culture. There were many negatives stereotypes of Arabs in the media since the 1973 oil embargo; some stereotypes include the depiction of Arabs as bloodthirsty dishonest, sadistic, uncultured people. Thus, this negative portrayal of Arab Muslims ties back to the reading and its description of the religious tension between Muslims and Christians. The war on terror further ingrained this negative portrayal of Muslims as terrorists and outsiders.
Behdad points out that orientalist representations in American media reflect the backbone of a power relationship, of the West's colonial and neo-colonial domination over the Middle East. Thus, ideological and institutional biases sponsor media's portrayal of Muslims as a regressing, dangerous group. In addition, several other factors contribute to America's ignorance of Islam as a religion and culture, including the minimal exposure to Islam in America, the marginality of Islamic experts in contemporary news, and the endorsements by political and social institutions to preserve the power structure.
Bankston, Carl L. and Danielle Antoinette Hidalgo. "The Waves of War."
Argument: Due to U.S intervention in Southeast Asian countries, there was a large population of Asians who migrated to the U.S as workers, wives, refugees. Because many immigrated as refugees of war, they faced different opportunities upon entering, leading some to have middle class status, while others had blue collar jobs.
Bankston and Hidalgo illustrate the migrations of various Asians to the United States as well as the policies that affected their settlement. The passage also goes in depth into the opportunities and barriers that many of the Asian groups faced upon arrival to the United States.
Overall: The passage specifically mentions the experiences of many immigrants, refugees, and new Americans from Southeast Asia. The information presented in the passage relates to Professor Matsumoto's lecture covering Asian Immigration. For example, in lecture Professor Matsumoto mentioned the patterns of Asian immigration and the numerous policies that they faced.
Massey, Douglas S. "Racial Formation in Theory and Practice: The Case of Mexicans in the United States."
Argument: How the processes of racialization with respect to Mexicans has made them more exploitable and excludable than ever before. It explains how Mexicans have been moved to the bottom on the socioeconomic hierarchy and have "been labelled socially as a dehumanized and vulnerable out-group" (1).
The author writes "The evidence reviewed here suggest that U.S. policies are moving Mexican Americans steadily away from their middle position in the economic hierarchy and toward the formation of a racialized underclass. Segregation levels are rising, discrimination is increasing, poverty is deepening, educational levels are stagnating, and the social safety net has been deliberately poked full of holes to allow immigrants to fall through. Whether or not Mexicans become a new urban underclass remains to be seen; but it is already clear that after occupying a middle socioeconomic position between whites and blacks for generations, the economic fortunes of Mexicans have now fallen to levels at or below those of African Americans (16). The article explains that the process of racialization of Mexicans has taken place over many years. The perception of Mexican immigrants changed with respect to the economy. For example, during wartime when there were many jobs available, Mexican immigrants were not seen as much of an issue, but when the economy went into downturns, Mexican immigrants were accused of taking jobs from white Americans. The racialization of Mexicans changed from good workers to undocumented immigrants that were stealing from whites. This viewpoint lead to laws and regulations regarding immigration in America.
Overall: This article broadly relates to the immigration dispute that is currently happening in our country. It addresses how the creation of the Border Patrol created a new category of immigrant - the undocumented immigrant. The creation of this category has majorly influenced the racialization of Mexican immigrants today. For example, there is a stereotype associated with undocumented immigrants that they are abusing our social system - using our public education and systems such as welfare.
Zhou, Min and J. V. Gatewood. "Transforming Asian America: Globalization and Contemporary Immigration to the United States."
Argument: The perception of Asian Americans as "foreigners" has imposed and perpetuated the "otherness" on the group. The notion of symbolic ethnicity does not always apply well to Asian Americans or to other racial minority groups. The "melting pot" does not whole-heartedly embrace non-European immigrants.
The article describes the large differences within the Asian American ethnic community. First generation Asian immigrants have a very different experience than second, third, or even fourth in becoming a part of this country. My use of the word "becoming" reflects how even with their families firmly established in the United States, many Asian Americans still do not feel that they are fully American. The article gives descriptions of white, well-dressed Anglos used over 100 years ago to define an American that to a certain extent still hold true today. The children of immigrants express their ancestor's "phenotype," separating them in appearance from the white descendants of Europeans widely considered to fit the description of "American." In this way many second, third, and fourth generation Asian Americans feel some detachment from both their ancestors' culture and the culture they live in. In response to these feelings, there have been many efforts among native Asian Americans to develop a stronger ethnic identity, to get back in touch with their roots while also appreciating their status as Americans. The contributes to the overall "hybrid" culture of Asian Americans that is not completely a part of American culture nor of that of their ancestor's mentioned in the passage. The ethnic identity of Asian Americans seems to still be developing.
Overall: This ties in to the broad topic of assimilation of different racial and ethnic groups in the United States, and different groups' facility and/or difficulty in doing so. By studying the history of the Asian American movement and the development of Asian American culture, we can understand their perspective and contextualize their struggles, some of which many of us might not have perceived. In my case, I had never learned about the difficulty of native-born Asian Americans in finding a common identity. I do not know if I would have put much thought into how the children of Asian American immigrants face similar discrimination to their parents/ancestors because of their similar "phenotype." Considering the different immigrant experiences of various racial and ethnic groups give us students a better picture of the interplay of the various dynamics within and between these groups.
Massey, Douglas S. "Five Myths About Immigration: Common Misconceptions Underlying US Border-Enforcement Policy."
Argument: " This mismanagement of relations with our neighbors in the Western Hemisphere] stems from serious misconceptions about the causes of immigration and the motivations of migrants, which have led to policies that not only fail to control and regulate immigration, but which actually produce outcomes diametrically opposed to our own interest as a nation and directly opposite stated policy objectives."
Myth 1. Migration is Cause by Lack of Economic Development in Migrants' Home Countries
i. People emigrate of the U.S., because the economic development in their home countries gives them a push to come. Communities that are more developed tend to have more people emigrating.
ii. International migrants usually originate from developing and growing nations instead of the world's poorest nations.
iii. Mexico is actually not poor by global standards.
Myth 2. Migration is Caused by Rapid Population Growth in Migrants' Home Countries
i. "There is no significant association between natural population increase and emigration."
Myth 3. Migrants Move Mainly in Response to Difference in Wages
i. There is a mild correlation, but simply wage differential is "neither necessary nor sufficient for migration to occur".
ii. People migrate to overcome failed or missing markets at home. (Ex: Mexicans migrate because there is no well developed market in Mexico for insurance, capital and credit.)
iii. "The probability of migration is related more to variation in real interest rates" (the degree of access to capital and credit).
Myth 4. Migrants Are Attracted to the United States by General Public Benefits
i. Both legal and illegal immigrants barely use public benefits while still paying taxes.
ii. A study found that "the greater the potential benefit, the less likely the migration".
Myth 5. Most Immigrants Intend to Settle Permanently in the United States
i. Mexican immigrants come to fix their problems at home. They send money back home and eventually return home to enjoy their earnings.
ii. Mexicans actually come to the U.S. for a short time span and then go back to Mexico
U.S. immigration enforcement policy is based off false understandings about the intention of immigrants and the american perception that immigrants came to mooch off citizen benefits. One myth is that migration is "caused by lack of economic development in Migrants' Home Countries", however, Massey concluded that communities in Mexico with the highest rates of outmigration are those that are developed (5). Another myth is that migrants move to gain significantly better wages, Massey proposes that even though there is a significant difference between Mexico and America, migrants come to America because Mexico lacks insurance, capital, or credit industries to facilitate large consumer purchases (7). Also, according to Massey, undocumented immigrants use public service rates "at rates far below those of legal immigrants." Therefore, migrants are not attracted by generous public services. These myths of causes of immigration and distribution of welfare and jobs unfairly resulted in America embarking on new immigration policy that increased enforcement efforts.
Overall: The points brought up in Massey's article revolve around the points Professor Ortiz brought about the perception of Mexican immigrants in American society. The misunderstanding brought up by Massey not only unfairly resulted in increased border regulation, but also created a expendable label tha Ortiz mentioned in her lecture. Mexican immigrants were welcomed when the economy called for cheap labor, and rejected during economic downturn. This passage explained along with Ortiz's lecture showed the various myths associated with immigrants and the negative impact these myths had on the assimilation of immigrants in America.
"America is still a radically unfinished society, and for now, at least, it makes sense to say that this unfinishedness is one of its distinctive features. The country has a political center, but it remains in every other sense decentered. [...] It neither required nor demands the kind of commitment that would put the legitimacy of ethnic or religious identification in doubt. It doesn't aim at a finished or fully coherent Americanism. Indeed, American politics, itself pluralist in character needs a certain sort of incoherence. [...] It isn't inconceivable that America will one day become an American nation-state, the many giving way to the one, but that is not what is now; nor is that its destiny. America has no singular national destiny -and to be an "American" is, finally, to know that and to be more or less content with it." (614). Anderson, Carol. "Nonviolent Direct Action: 1955-1965."
This article discusses two methods of nonviolent direct action—the bus boycotts of the 1950s and the sit-ins of the 1960s. According to Anderson, the period between the 1950s bus boycotts and the 1960 sit-ins provided pivotal resources for the emerging civil rights movement. During this period, the foundation of the civil rights movement was built and active local movement centers were formed in Southern black communities. Using quotations from civil rights activists such as Martin Luther King Jr. and examples of nonviolent protests such as restaurant sit-ins, Anderson explains how blacks implemented a new plan to end segregation—through civil disobedience. In 1959, members of the SCLC, CORE, and FOR entered a segregated restaurant in Atlanta after holding a nonviolent workshop at a nearby college campus. "This interracial group shocked everyone by sitting down and eating . . . Besides providing an example for the other workshop participants, these acts of defiance showed everyone how to protest. Marvin Rich of CORE explained: 'They were being demonstrated in a public form, so people would just walk by and see it. And people who didn't think things were possible saw that they were possible, and six months later, in their own home town, they may try it out'" (73). This passage demonstrates how protesters set examples for other people of nonviolent direct action. While there was widespread frustration and hostility toward the white community, many people were hesitant to stand up for their rights. It took certain people and organizations to take action first before others started to follow. This passage gives an example of a few people who sparked a movement for action. Because early sit-ins did not give rise to a massive sit-in movement before 1960, these individual protests were very important in proving to people that nonviolence can lead to success.
c) Anderson's analysis of the sit-in movement is strongly associated with Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech on bus boycotts. In his speech, he emphasizes the need for civil disobedience because with this nonviolence, comes dignity. He states that avoiding violence will distinguish themselves from their opponents in the Klan and the White Citizens Council because they will have accomplished their goal while maintaining their moral standards. In Sawyer's lecture on "Non-violent Social Change and its Critics," he explains that some people such as Malcolm X had an opposing viewpoint on civil change. This passage brings up questions that we have talked about in discussion section that relate to Sawyer's lecture: MLK and Malcolm X disagreed on the method for obtaining racial freedom. Is there evidence for a better tactic (nonviolence vs. violence)? Whose responsibility is it to ignite change? Is it the government's responsibility or the responsibility of the oppressed?
Malcolm X. "The Ballot or the Bullet."
In order to avoid a violent confrontation, blacks need to be given their guaranteed voting rights without them being gerrymandered, filibustered, delayed, or simply denied by whites. Once this is made possible, it is up to blacks to be smart and educated with the potent "ballot."
Although Blacks politically have the Democrats first on their list, the Democrats reciprocate the favor by putting them "last." They control both Houses of Congress; yet still manage to stall on Civil Rights Legislation. Malcolm X claims the whites redraw the district lines when blacks become too influential in said district. Proves his point that black votes are unjustly interfered with to minimize their influence. The United Nations has a "charter of human rights," in which Blacks could implicate the US for outright violation of their God-given rights.
In addressing the African-American community, Malcolm believes that Blacks should live in accordance with his ideal of the ballot or the bullet. By not living up to this "ballot or the bullet" ideal African-Americans are, in a sense, allowing and perpetuating the racism directed towards themselves. The ballots are [were], contrary to popular belief, being used against the African-American community; the African-American communities were being used for their ballots and got nothing in return from elected officials. Malcolm argues that this presidential election year (1964), African-Americans should use ballots maturely. By maturely he means that blacks should recognize the power of a ballot and collectively use them in a manner that benefits the black communities across the nation. However, one should pocket his/her ballot if it's not in the best interest of the voters' rights.. In doing so, African Americans are left with no other choice but to take on the responsibility of protecting their own constitutional rights by any means necessary.This is where the bullet comes in.
Overall: This passage, although directed towards African-American unity, also brings up the importance of unity among "brothers" or other minorities. A unity between Latino, Asian, and African-American brothers is an important theme throughout the course. Malcolm argued that when these brothers come together, their voting power has the ability to hold Sam in check. In other words, by erasing the lines that separate minorities from one another, minorities are more effectively able to manipulate government legislation in a manner that allows minorities to have a say in the government. Such a unity has been supported by such individuals as MLK Jr and John Horton who also claim that cross-racial alliances fight against nativism in the U.S.
"White ethnics easily number more than 40 million Americans. They live in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions, generally in the larger cities rather than rural areas, are predominantly Catholic, but with large numbers of Jews in New York City and other Northern urban areas, and lastly are heavily represented, except for Jews, in blue-collar occupations. Irish-Americans, German-Americans, and Jews are less likely to be a part of this broadly defined group than Americans of Eastern, Central, and Southern descent" (page 22). Weed, Perry. "Components of the White Ethnic Movement." (1973)
This essay is a statistical overview of the different components of white ethnics, specifically regarding the categories of residency, religion, and the blue-collar dimension. These statistics are summarized in the conclusion of the essay, "White ethnics easily number more than 40 million Americans. They live in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions, generally in the larger cities rather than rural areas, are predominantly Catholic, but with large numbers of Jews in New York City and other Northern urban areas, and lastly are heavily represented, except for Jews, in blue-collar occupations. Irish-Americans, German-Americans, and Jews are less likely to be a part of this broadly defined group than Americans of Eastern, Central, and Southern descent" (page 22). This passage shows that white ethnics are a disproportionately high percentage of the blue-collar labor force and the majority of the blue collar labor jobs are located in the Industrial Northeast and Midwest states (i.e. New York City, Detroit, Chicago, Cleveland, Boston, Gary, Buffalo, and Pittsburgh).
Overall: This passage also discusses how white ethnics are becoming a distinct minority. They are have been described as alienated, forgotten, troubled, disillusioned, frustrated and angry. This aligns with Professor Decker's lecture on 1/16/14 when he discussed the three overlapping phases of the white ethnics. First they were assimilated into Anglo-American culture which gave them a toehold into the benefits of white privilege. Second, they experienced a backlash during the Civil Rights era to counter the threat black inclusion posed to toehold on white privilege. Finally multiculturalism challenged the distribution of white privilege and minority entitlements. Professor Decker's information on residency, class, and jobs also correlates with the statistics provided in the article.
"If the project were 'color blind,' in Clark's view, it would simply end up another one of many segregated projects" "She notes that 75 percent of the 6,000-family waiting list for Starrett City is nonwhite, an that black families must wait longer for apartment since vacancies are filled not in the order by which people got on the list but according to race." "There are many other projects that are built, like Starrett City, with state and federal subsidies, yet that remain overwhelmingly white. 'They've never lifted a finger to set any quota there,' she says. 'If they established that kind of quota all around, it would be a different matter, but they established it on the backs of the black people who want to move into Starrett City, who want a decent apartment.'" Freiberg, Peter. "Integration Quota Faces Court Challenge."
Argument: Quotas to promote integration in housing markets violates federal civil rights laws and state housing law.
Civil rights groups—NAACP, Columbia University's Fair Housing Clinic, and the Open Housing Center—filed suit against Starrett City's quota which violates federal civil rights laws as well as state housing law. Starrett city is composed of 64% white and 36% nonwhite in its' 6,000 families. Starrett opened in 1974 with a quota to retain an integrated community 70/30-white/nonwhite mix. Starrett's argues that the quota is meant to promote integration, and if the quota were to be eradicated, then the project would end up primarily black, because "white flight" would occur, and therefore end up as another segregated community. Due to the established quota, groups such as blacks have to wait longer for an apartment. Betty Hoeber, director of the Open Housing Center, says the argument would be different if there were also established quotas in projects similar to Starrett City that are overwhelmingly white, but "they've never lifted a finger to set any quota there."
Kelley, Robin. "Kickin' Reality, Kickin' Ballistics: 'Gangsta Rap' and Postindustrial Los..."(1994)
Argument: Gangsta rap is the scapegoat for serious problems of urban America. But really the rap is just a spokesperson for the otherwise ignored voices of urban youth, and it needs to be paid attention to, not just written off as a product of lazy misfits.
This article analyzes that "...a good deal of gangsta rap is...a window into, and critique of, the criminalization of black youth" (Kelley 185). The base of gangsta rap describes the social structure of where the black individual categorizes at. African-Americans have always been the targets of institutional racism, be it by the police or mainstream U.S. Gangsta rap serves as a window of opportunity for blacks to express their criminalization. Yet, as Kelley further argues, "...the rappers' own stereotypes of the ghetto as 'war zone' and the black youth as 'criminal'...in turn structure and constrain their efforts to create a counter narrative of life..."(Kelley 185). Kelley describes how instead of helping their efforts in portraying the discrimination of black youths and their hardships in life, gangsta rap instead is countering their measures and is even reinforcing the notion that blacks are indeed the so called criminals the rappers are trying to prove wrong in being.
Argument: This article can associate with Bell Hooks' "Gangsta Culture" in that Hooks also argues that black gangsta rap is a product of the way white society dominates the black community. Gangsta rap is a way of displaying to the outside world that in the black community, one must do what they can in order to survive in a world full of prejudice that dominates black culture. Even though the intent of gangsta rap contradicts with what mainstream perceives of gangster rappers, in that gangsta rappers are actually harming themselves in depicting themselves as doing anything they can for survival (i.e., selling drugs, pimping, etc.)
"Clearly, the lives and experiences of Karlin, Du, and Harlins depict a hierarchy of women derived from, and largely responsive to, the larger social order that has traditionally or historically privileged some at the expense of others. Indeed in an urban arena such as Los Angeles, purportedly the most culturally diverse city in the United States, racial and class diversity more often than not means an unequal distribution of resources and power that deeply affects the quality of one's life. This case also suggests that it can immensely affect the quality of one's justice. The case of the People vs. Soon Ja DU, therefore, holds important symbolic and real implications for one's comprehension of female's social and status relations/relationships in contemporary urban society, particularly their relationships to power and their use of power in relation to one another." Pg. 165 Stevenson, Brenda E. "Latasha Harlins, Soon Ja Du, and Joyce Karlin: A Case Study of Multicultural Female Violence and Justice on the Urban Frontier." (1991) Amanda Isabel
Argument: The study focuses on the unequal distribution of power among females of different races. The ruling of the Soon Ja Du case proved to be an analogy for what happened in the larger society, in which the white woman has power to rule the other "inferior" races. In comparing the Korean American and the African American, Judge Karlin chose to favor the Korean American, because the typical Asian American stereotype made her seem more victimized than the young black girl, who is often seen as strong and violent.
The goal of this author is to explore, "where women of various class, racial/ethnic, and generational affiliations stand in relation to each other and in relation to the larger society—underscoring the conflicting and complementary nature incumbent in, and in spite of, female diversity in contemporary urban society." In other words, women have differing structures within the female gender that cause an unequal separation of power and privilege. The author plans to explore this using the Latasha Harlins Case because the case involves an underprivileged black female teenager, a working class Asian immigrant mother, and a privileged white female judge. Each women is a different ethnicity and socioeconomic status which allows the author to make direct comparisons to the relation of these three women to the larger society.
Overall: This passage aims to further explain the distribution of power and socioeconomic status among different races/ethnicities. At the same time it focuses on specifically the female gender as another factor that plays into the dynamics of status. In this case, woman are considered below men in social status, therefore, by being a black lower class women, Latasha Harlins is considered to have the lowest socioeconomic status and faces the most difficulty in life in regards to racialization, stereotyping, and success.
Zavella, Patricia. "Reflections on Diversity Among Chicanas."
Argument: "I believe we need to reflect on how women within a particular group vary from one another, and to research women's lives in ways that identify the sources of diversity without resorting to mechanistic conclusions that class, race, or gender (and I include sexuality within a gender analysis) alone gives rise to difference. That is, we should analyze how race, class, or gender are socially constructed yet not essentialize any of the categories of oppression."
Although some women share similar issues and experiences, people usually associate women into one group or will separate them into racial groups. Using Chicanas as an example, Zavella explains that even though "Chicanas are racially distinct and have spanish language as a ethnic signifier" than white North americans, people should not assume that there is a "coherent Chicano cultural heritage", in which all values, norms, and customs form a tradition or culture that all Chicanos are socialized into (76). Therefore, a first generation Chicana and fourth Chicana may share the same skin type, but they don't necessarily share the same culture because they may have differences in citizenship, class, language, perspectives and experiences. Furthermore, Zavella stresses that one should notice individual identity amongst Chicanas rather than lumping them together into one category or racial group.
Overall: During discussion, we talked about broad implications of women of color being represented in entertainment. For example, music videos often have Chicano women that are light skinned. Therefore, the constant focus of "beautiful" light-skinned women in entertainment represents the bias treatment that dark-skinned women face. Categorizing women based by skin type is what zavella is advocating against.
Collins, Patricia Hill. "Toward a New Vision: Race, Class, and Gender as Categories of Analysis and Connection." (1996)--
Argument: I contend that we must acquire both new theories of how race, class and gender have shaped the experiences not just of women of color, but of all groups. Moreover, we must see the connections between these categories of analysis and the personal issues in our everyday lives, particularly our scholarship, our teaching and our relationships with our colleagues and students" (214).
Collins is trying to rid of the "black and white" notion: the idea of "good and evil", "perpetrator and victim". There is a gray area where most of us lie. In many ways, we are oppressed and in many other ways, we are the oppressors. She does not want us to have dichotomous thinking because the simultaneous position becomes hard to see. If people can only see themselves as the victim, they cannot see themselves as the oppressor. To see oneself as partly an oppressor also means fixing the problem. Collins wants us to see that there is a problem that each of us contribute to. The only way to fix the problem is to know that it exists in the first place.
Overall: In Do the Right Thing, Sal says many times that he does not have a problem with the neighborhood and the people in it, and for a while, everyone seems to exist seemingly peacefully. However, racial tension definitely lurks. Many did not believe that there was indeed racial tension though. Because most did not realize there was a problem, the tension only continued to build until the problem became evident. By then, "solving the problem" had to resort to violence as a solution.
Zhou, Min. "Are Asian Americans Becoming 'White?'"
Argument: Asian Americans may fit the mold of "whiteness" equated to American society's idea of success, but based on looks and stereotypes, they are still a minority who will have to face some sort of discrimination. As "white" as Asian Americans may seem, they will always be unequal in the eyes of society.
This brings up the issue of white privilege: Author argues that Jewish and Irish were both traditionally non-white but gained white status as they gained wealth and power in the community. The label Asian American was coined in the late 1960s, but most Asian descendents would never classify themselves as such, but rather as their specific ethnic group, such as Korean, Chinese, Japanese, etc. When the Hart Celler Act of 1965 ended the quota system, it caused a skyrocket in Asian immigration to the Unites States. Although some ethnic groups are excelling in the US job market, does not apply to all groups (Vietnamese, Cambodian, Laotian, and Hmong Americans take up low-skilled work). Argues that Pan Asianism is a political ideology of American-born and educated, middle class Asians and that most Asian immigrants do not agree with it. She argues that the model minority stereotype reinforces the myth that the US does not have racism and that those who do not gain economic success are lazy or made poor choices.
Overall: Having model minorities pits minority groups against one another and can pit Asian Americans against whites, because being a model minority strongly separates Asians from being "white". People disregard the fact that the majority of Asian immigrants come from a middle class background, so it is easier to gain that status in the US. Because successful Asian immigrants move to white suburban communities, children grow up surrounded by white people and by 2nd generation often forget their parents' native languages. Thinks that the second generation is more conscious of disadvantages of being non-white than their parents were. Being a model minority goes hand in hand with being a forever foreigner. Asian americans have to constantly prove that they are loyal Americans.
Katznelson, Ira. "Preface: Du Bois's Paradox."
Argument: Affirmative Action used to be white during FDR's New Deal, being that many new reforms were created to help whites during WWII, creating a middle class. Opportunities were given to them that would widen the gap between whites and blacks.
In "Preface: Du Bois's Paradox", Ira Katznelson writes about the basis of her book When Affirmative Action Was White. She writes about the misconceptions behind affirmative actions and how affirmative action should be changed. Often affirmative action is placed in a negative light arguing solely about higher level jobs and higher education, particularly colleges. However, affirmative action should be more than that, Katznelson argues that affirmative action should be a "remedy". The word remedy means a fix or solution to a problem. Thus it can be assumed that affirmative action is supposed to be a solution or a fix to racism. It should be an attempt to help the black community as a whole, rather those trying to enter into "elite institutions". The word elite is used to describe privileged institutions, implying that it can only help the few. Elite calls to mind a small number of individuals. By using this word, Katznelson shows the narrow scope of current affirmative action. However, she argues that affirmative action is meant to benefit the disadvantaged and help the "large percentage". Her main concepts are current affirmative action's narrow scope, how affirmative action should be and the goals behind the notion of affirmative action. She uses "elite" to show how few are currently helped by affirmative action and uses the word "dispossession" to describe the current black population. Dispossession is depriving people of their possessions, in this case, their rights. By using this word, Katznelson argues for affirmative action and its reconstruction to fight against the deprivation of blacks. She addresses the themes of race and inequality through her word use. She contrasts "elite" and "dispossession" to enable the reader's judgment on the racial inequality of American society. Blacks are deprived and only a few are allowed help.
Overall: Katznelson's article is directly related with our class. Her writing talks about the mechanisms of race and how this has disenfranchised the black community. Our class pulls on this idea discussing how race can alter one's perception and action towards members of another racial background. In week 6's discussion, we used this article to discuss how race plays a role in one's ability to achieve "success" and how the ideas of race are socially constructed. Katznelson's article ties into this by discussing the deprivation of blacks due to their historically "inferior" race.
Carter, Prudence L. "Introduction."
"Keeping It Real addresses four main issues that deal with how students handle everything from the institutional, the cultural, and the personal when it comes to their school attachment...My examination of the nexus between gender socialization, family relations and culture in these students' lives sheds further light on the relationships among students' multiple identities and social experiences and their engagement in learning and achievement," (6-7). Carter introduces her thesis by comparing the academic performances of African American and Latino students to Asian and White students. She states the social scientists provide abstract explanations such as "poverty, limited parental education, underfinanced schools, low teacher expectations, bad curricula, low parental involvement and limited access to information, and vestiges of racisms in schools" and also "culture. She quotes the claim of Signithia Fordham and John Ogbu in that some kids purposely fail school to avoid the "'burden of acting white.'" Cultural identity is then tied to personal academic performance, and collectively minority students perceive high achievement as "being incongruent with their racial and ethnic identities." Returning to the four issues she mentions in her topic sentence, the first concerns the definition of knowledge. She suggests that only the top few, very privileged and powerful authority figures have the ability to define the nature of knowledge. Thus, those that conform to the dominant cultural rules are considered "smart," while those apart from the status quo are marginalized. Secondly, Carter argues that some students, while embracing their own culture, exemplify practices apart from those of mainstream culture. Thus, relating back to the first points, students may grow up critiquing the culture taught in schools rather than abiding by it. Thirdly, she mentions that the students' response to school reflect how "in-group members should react" to their social location. Fourth, the intersections between race and gender also plays a significant role in how students experience school.
Overall: The reading relates to the theme discussed throughout lectures all quarter: stereotypes breed stereotypes. The relation between race and academic performance as commonly assumed (whites and Asians as model students; blacks and Latinos as failures) are reevaluated in the context of institutions and cultures. The reading undermines the stereotypes that minority students are inherently lazy or dumb by introducing several confounding variables that potentially forced specific race groups to fall under the negative, self-perpetuating stereotypes. She explains that social inequality is not the result of individual faults but the shortcomings of social institutions and the response of the students to discrimination.
"Chronic Black Joblessness is most often explained in terms of pervasive employer discrimination, the changing structure of urban economies, cultural deficiencies, poor access to social capital, or some combination of the above. Each of these theoretical frames of persistent joblessness is compelling and each has wide appeal, but whether considered singly or taken together, they provide an incomplete understanding of the causes of joblessness to varying degrees, they do not examine systematically the process of finding work that poor blacks undertake. By failing to do so, they overlook- or, as in the case of the cultural deficiency perspective, critically misstate-the meanings that the black poor attribute to their labor market experiences. They fail as well to see that the meanings that inform behaviors are produced within the context of interpersonal relations. These relations matter because it is through social interactions and engagements that the poor diagnose problems of joblessness, theorizing about its primary causes and possible solutions. It is through social interactions as well that the joblessness discourses they produce have their ultimate consequences, shaping how poor blacks engage with each other as actors, specifically as job seekers and job holders, in ways that affect their labor market outcomes above and beyond the initiating factors " (3) Smith, Sandra Susan. "Explaining Persistent Black Joblessness."
Argument: The interpersonal relations between job-seekers and job-holders are characterized by distrust that deters cooperation between the two. Employers are not looking to assist their relations by claiming that job-seekers are unmotivated, irresponsible, and needy. Job0seekers are reluctant to seek assistance or accept it in order to maintain their dignity.
This passage decries the focus on common explanations for more frequent and persistent rates of unemployment among blacks and accounts for their own deficiencies in argument. The author asserts instead of initial institutional factors most significantly influencing unemployment, the experience of poor blacks in the search for labor has the largest impact on discourse, which in the end is more critical to the condition of joblessness. The author argues that social impact of primary factors determines the views and attitudes of poor blacks facing the problem of poverty and unemployment, therefore perpetuating, and persisting, the issue of black unemployment.
Smith critiques Anthony's observations and notices that the black poor understand their joblessness as their failure in uplifting themselves. She also claims that Anthony failed to mention that a cause of black joblessness was the lack of networking - the reluctance of low wage laborers to seek assistance in each other.
Smith's study interviewed low income participants who were both job-seekers and job-holders to understand the steps these people took in acquiring jobs for themselves or influencing employers to hire others. Her study supported Anthony's views and concluded that distrust between job-seekers and job-holders was pervasive and negatively affected their decisions to cooperate during the job searching process.
Overall: The impact on a racially defined community by primary institutional inequalities is a pattern consistent with many non-dominant groups. Similarly, incomplete or erroneous misconception regarding problems facing marginalized racial groups is common. This includes defining model minority status as a racial "success" and the designation of foreign language as a property of subterfuge.
Brunner, Borgan. "Affirmative Action History." (2006)
Argument: Brunner gives a short history of affirmative action and highlights the difficulty in making decisions about affirmative action.
This passage demonstrates that, although affirmative action has been praised, it has also been criticized throughout history. Many conservative whites believed that affirmative action resulted in reverse discrimination where minority groups were given a free ride when it came to jobs and college acceptances. The Bakke case is used as an example. A medical school that had accepted less qualified minority applicants, reserving a certain amount of spots for minority students, rejected Allan Bakke, a white male. While conservatives felt this way, liberals believed that minorities had been facing discrimination for hundreds of years and whites still dominated society. Therefore the playing field would still not be completely level with affirmative action.
Overall: The passage also discusses the transformation of the purpose of affirmative action. The policy was once about redressing past oppression and injustice, but, as far as education goes, affirmative action became a way to obtain educational benefits from a diverse student body. This relates to topics we have discussed in class about how to educate people on diversity. Susila had the class write qualities of students we would want to accept to UCLA if we were admissions officers. My class agreed on diversity being a necessary quality. Does having a diverse student body mean schools must use affirmative action? When I was choosing applicants, I found it difficult to ignore the ethnicity of students when looking at their pictures. It was hard not to consider race when choosing which students to accept.
Lee, Jennifer and Frank D. Bean, "Intermarriage an Multiracial Identification: The Asian American Experience and Implications for Changing Color Lines."
Argument: Intermarriage and multiracial identity are promoting the blending of races.
This passage details the different types of intermarriages predominantly focusing on the intermarriage of Asian Americans. The "changing color lines" is the result of intermarriages and the fact that the color lines are shifting from "black-nonblack that places Asians and Latinos closer to whites than blacks are to whites." Lee and Bean explore the "multiracial identification" that the census had to change in 2000 to allow a space for people of mixed races.
Intermarriage has increased since the 1967 Loving v. Commonwealth of Virginia case which overturned state laws prohibiting interracial marriage and sex. Intermarriage decreases social distance between groups, declines racial prejudice, and changes racial boundaries. In addition, interracial marriage has been increasing due to the multiracial movement. This movement allowed individuals to identify on the U.S. census as "multiracial." The argument was that forcing monoracial identity denies the existence of interracial marriages, but moreover, is ultimately discriminatory. Black Americans experience multiracial identification differently than Asians and Latinos because of their unique history in which the "one-drop rule" was enforced. This rule declared that "all persons with any trace of black ancestry were labeled as racially black." In terms of geographical representation, multiracial individuals are predominately present in areas with large immigrant flow. 40 percent of all those who reported a multiracial identification reside in the West. "Increases in intermarriage and the growth of the multiracial population reflect a blending of races and the shifting of color lines."
Overall: This article explains the intermarriage that is seen within many Asian Americans, whites, and Latinos. In professor Matsumoto's lecture she explained that many second and third generation Asian Americans intermarried. Also, within previous lectures, interracial marriages were against the law, but now with so many it is not frowned upon.
" By the late '70s, however, flaws in the policy began to show up amid its good intentions. Reverse discrimination became an issue, epitomized by the famous Bakke case in 1978. Allan Bakke, a white male, had been rejected two years in a row by a medical school that had accepted less qualified minority applicants- the school had a separate admissions policy for minorities and reserved 16 out of 100 places for minority student." (pg.1) "'[You are] abusing that child and relegating her to the position of a housemaid,' the judge told Laureano after she acknowledged that she spoke only in Spanish to the girl." "Before independence, German was virtually the only tongue spoken throughout fifteen thousand square miles of eastern Pennsylvania, while Dutch was widely used in the Hudson River Valley." "But in the late 1800s, the federal government initiated a policy of Americanization. It forcibly removed thousands of Indian children from their families and shipped them to boarding schools to learn English. The disastrous result,...was that 40% of Cherokee children became illiterate in any language and 75% dropped out of school."
"...it was not unusual for wagon trains of Mexicans and Anglo cowhands to cross paths, camp together for the night, and start a friendly campfire competition between corrido singers and Anglo ballad singers, thus initiating musical exchanges between the two cultures." "By the late 1920's, Carribbeans were fusing their arrangments with ragtime and jazz greats of New York City."
Horton, John. "From Nativism to Ethnic and Interethnic Politics."
Argument: The electoral result depended on both ethnic and interethnic voting patterns. It pointed to a transition from a period of tension between established residents and newcomers, white minorities and nonwhite majorities, toward greater accommodation and harmony.
It's about the start of ethnic politics in changes in the Monterey Park council. The empowerment of minorities and immigrants with the decline of Anglo dominance showed that diversity and multiculturalism were being institutionalized in the Monterey Park council. The failure of the symbolic Washington monument project and the election of a council with more women, Asian, and Latino councilman was based off two factors according to Horton. One factor was the development of minority politics. Specifically, the process of organizing and voting for ethnic representation allowed minorities and immigrants to combat nativist policies and candidates. The second factor was the growth of participating minority and immigrant residents, which overpowered the slow growth of the nativist group. These factors were significant in winning elections and gaining political power, however, Horton explains another important factor in the evolution of ethnic politics. Horton brings up that "interethnic alliance on candidates and issues in a multiethnic city" allowed the minorities and immigrants to finally have the power in politics to accommodate key issues and establish harmony among all citizens in Monterey Park.
Overall: Ethnic politics have huge implications on present elections. During a discussion, the class talked about Obama's ability to relate to the white racial groups and minority racial groups, resulting in him gaining a substantial amount of votes from all races. Political parties and their candidates target certain racial groups to gain votes, especially since nonwhite races keep growing in population, resulting in potential for more votes.
"Writing for the majority in Grutter , Justice O'Connor said the law school's admissions policies satisfied the constitutional requirement that any government use of race be 'narrowly tailored' to achieve a compelling interest-in thise case, a diverse student body... In contrast to the undergraduate admissions procedures, O'Conner said, the law school 'awards no mechanical, predetermined diversity 'bonuses' based on race and ethnicity.' Under the law school program, an applicant's race or ethnicity was not 'the defining feature' of his or her application, she wrote. And even thought the law school explicitly sought a 'critical mass' of minority admittees, O'Connor said that the admissions program does not operate as a quota. O'Conner ended her opinion, though, by suggesting that race-conscious admissions policies should not be permanent." (164). "Writing for the majority in Gratz, Rehnquist said the program violated the Equal Protection Clause because its use of race was 'not narrowly tailored to achieve the interest in educational diversity that [university officials] claim justifies their program." (165) Jost, Kenneth. "Affirmative Action." (2004)
Jost is writing about the affirmative action court cases in Michigan: Gratz v. Bollinger and Grutter v. Bollinger. The Supreme Court's rulings were split in that affirmative action was acceptable when used in admission for graduate school. In this case, it was law school since the application process is more "individualized" and "holistic." The justification behind that was the applicant can be better measured in how he or she would contribute to a diverse environment. Undergraduate admissions, however according to the Supreme Court, is not as "narrowly tailored", as in the applicants are not as closely looked at and so their contributions to diversity cannot be measured. So there is affirmative action here, but not there. Pell and Bollick believe this ruling is a tragedy, however, since it did not address "racial gaps in elementary and secondary education." Bollick adds on, "racial preferences in postsecondary education makes us think that we are solving that problem when in fact it is growing." (165)
Overall: Simply having it and simply demolishing it cannot be the solution. In Professor Sawyer's lecture, he talks about who affirmative action actually benefitted: white women. Critics of affirmative action would say that affirmative action would play the zero-sum game. Minorities would get a boost while whites are left behind. Statistically, this is untrue if white women are the main beneficiary of affirmative action. With or without affirmative action, minorities still are not as accepted into upper division education as whites. Affirmative action was meant to encourage diversity; however, even with the program in action, minority admissions are still not significantly growing. If minorities are still not benefitting from the program, then the problem of having or not having affirmative action is out of question.