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IN FRATERNAM MEAM
Wednesday, September 06, 2006
THE MEANING OF WHITE
HOW IMPORTANT IS YOUR RACIAL IDENTITY TO YOU?
Researchers long thought it was'nt that crucial to whites. But a groundbreaking new study on whiteness and race relations by University of Minnesota sociologists shows that whites in U.S. are far more conscious of being white -- and the priviledges it brings -- than was believed.

The survey is packed with fascinating findings, some surprising (a stunning proportion of whites - 77percent - say their race has a distinct cutlrure that should be preserved) and some less so (whites view their role in the social hierarchy more benignly than blacks and Hispanics do). Whites are more likely to say prejudice and discrimination put blacks at a disadvantage than to say those factors contribute to white advantage. And they are much less likely than nonwhites to attribute inequality to bias in the legal system.

What to make of all this? Though whites in the U.S. believe there remain advantages to being white, they don't necessarily link those advantages with blacks' disadvantages. This hinders racial reconciliation, says co-author Douglas Hartman: "Whites have invented subtle ways to convince themselves that race isn't problem in America". Blacks do see more racism in society than whites but, contrary to stereotype, seem disinclined to blame the system for their disadvantge. In fact, they are more likely to attribute it to the individual causes like a lack of hard work - 77 percent - did so, compared with 62 percent whites. "We think of U.S. minorities as less engaged in American individualism," Hartman says, "but they are maybe more so".

(Source:TIMEMAG/NOTEBOOK by: Jennine Lee-St.John)
posted by infraternam meam @ 4:35 PM  
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Name: infraternam meam
Home: Chicago, United States
About Me: I am now at the prime of my life and have been married for the past 25 years. Sickly at times, but wants to see the elixir vita, so that I will be able to see my grandchildren from my two boys.
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