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Understanding Race

Race is among the most complicated issues in the United States. So, what is race, exactly? And what is racism? Find the answers in scientific research, multicultural literature and other resources. Discover the challenges confronting race relations today.
  1. Racial Terms and Definitions (15)

Interesting Facts About the Hispanic American Population
Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the United States. Facts the U.S. Census Bureau has compiled about the Hispanic population reveal the strides Latinos have made in areas such as business and the areas of the country where Latinos live in large numbers.

Dealing With Racism
What is racism? When people use this term, they may be referring to various forms of discrimination—institutional racism, internalized racism, reverse racism and so forth. Learn to define the racism you encounter and fight against it. Taking part in demonstrations and reaching out to the powers that be when a racist episode occurs are just some ways you can be an anti-racist activist. Talking t…

What Is Race?
Race is arguably the most divisive aspect of Western society. One’s access to quality housing, health care and education varies depending on race. Although we live in a racially stratified society, the concept of race didn’t always exist. So, what is race, what are its origins in America, and why do scientists say they have little use for this concept.

Four Different Forms of Racism
Racism is more complicated than simply one racial group hating and oppressing another group. Institutions may discriminate against racial groups. People with racial prejudices may engage in covert or subtle acts of racism against others. Moreover, people of color who’ve suffered as a result of pervasive white supremacist ideologies may battle...

What Is Racism?
What is racism, really? Explore the definition of racism. Learn what internalized racism is as well as other forms of racism, such as horizontal racism and reverse racism. Examine examples of racism from the past and the present.

Identifying and Dismantling Race-Based Stereotypes and Myths
Race-based stereotypes and myths pose a huge threat to equality. Racial stereotypes and myths lead to prejudice and hatred, which, in turn, lead to discrimination against entire ethnic groups. The problem is that those who make up racial groups are so unique that no generalization can capture who they are. To deconstruct stereotypes, it’s...

The Difference Between Ethnicity and Race
How are race and ethnicity different? This overview uses definitions and examples to distinguish these two concepts.

An Overview of Reverse Racism
As the issue of reverse racism gains more prominence in the United States of the 21st century, more public figures are being accused of being anti-white. At the same time, more antiracist activists are arguing that reverse racism doesn’t exist because minorities lack the power needed to discriminate against whites.

Does Reverse Racism Exist?
Racism makes news headlines every day. But what about so-called reverse racism? What are some examples of this phenomenon, and what’s the best way to define it? Is reverse racism even real?

Quotes About The Myth of Reverse Racism
The perception that whites are more victimized by racism than people of color are has spread in recent years, but a number of people in the spotlight—from activists to entertainers to writers—argue that reverse racism is really just a myth. This overview highlights what prominent people have had to say on the subject.

What Is a Stereotype?
What is a stereotype? Stereotypes are qualities assigned to groups of people related to their race, nationality and sexual orientation, to name a few. Find out why stereotypes should be avoided.

What Is Racial Prejudice?
Racial prejudice is a term that's used all the time, but what does it mean exactly. How does it intersect with racial stereotyping, racial profiling and institutional racism? a

What Is Colorism?
What is colorism? Find out more about skin color discrimination, its origins in and outside of the United States and the impact it has had on black America and other communities of color. There’s a reason why sales of skin-whitening creams continue to soar and why the most prominent people of color tend to have light skin. The answer is colorism.

Celebrities Like George Lopez & Zoe Saldana Reveal Diversity of Hispanic America
Latino celebrities such as George Lopez, Zoe Saldana and Salma Hayek demonstrate the racial diversity that exists among Hispanics in America.

Four Bad Reasons People Give for Using the N-Word
Many people continue to use the N-word, despite the slur’s ugly racial history. Find out the most common reasons N-word users give for saying the epithet and why their excuses don’t hold up.

Five Common Stereotypes About Africa
Despite growing interest in Africa around the globe, racial stereotypes about it persist. This list of common myths about Africa aims to clear them up.

Five Myths About Multiracial People in the U.S.
An increasing number of Americans identify as multiracial, but myths about mixed-race people persist. This list aims to break down misconceptions about multiracial identity.

What Is Internalized Racism?
How are ethnic minorities affected by racism in society? They sometimes turn racism inward, hating their own racial group as a result. This is known as internalized racism.

Five Racial Terms to Avoid
Ever been confused about which racial term to use to describe a certain group? Find out which racial terms are derogatory and why as well as the alternative racial names you can use instead.

Examples of Subtle Racism and the Problems It Poses
What is subtle, or everyday, racism? Examples include treating people from racial minority groups differently than other groups, ignoring people of color or ridiculing them. Find out more about this disturbing but common practice.

Five Reasons Not to Call Someone Racist
A number of strategies exist on how to deal with racism, but one way that often proves ineffective is calling someone a racist. Using this label typically backfires because it results in defensiveness and insincere apologies, among other reasons.

Five Classic Children’s Books About Race
Modern books for juveniles run the gamut. Vampires, aliens and mean girls commonly make appearances. Meanwhile, when one refers to juvenile books from the past, it’s not unusual to hear a crack about Dick and Jane or Spot running. But such jokes provide a limited view of youth literature from earlier time periods. In the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s, authors penned a variety of books for young peop…

Five Books About the Japanese-American Internment Experience
Understanding why the United States government decided to place Japanese Americans in internment camps during World War II requires familiarity with such issues as racism, xenophobia, wartime attitudes and 20th century history to name a few. Nothing puts these issues into context like the memoirs, novels and critical nonfiction that have been...

Multicultural Literature: Six Modern Works of Note
Great books about race didn't die out in the middle of the 20th century. Take a look at some of the groundbreaking works of multicultural literature writers have crafted from the 1990s to the present.

Interesting Facts about Racial Minority Groups in the U.s.
Do you know as much about America’s largest minority groups as you think? The information the U.S. Census Bureau has pieced together about African Americans, Latinos and Asian Americans, to name a few, shed light on the size of these populations, where they live in the United States as well as their achievements and challenges.

An Overview of Xenophobia
This overview of xenophobia describes how the practice resulted in the internment of Japanese Americans, racist smear campaigns against Barack Obama and other politicians and racial profiling of Latinos, to name a few.

Types of Racial Bias and Discrimination
Racial bias and discrimination come in many forms, including racism, racial profiling, racial stereotypes and racial prejudice. Learn more about these types of bigotry with this overview.

The Link Between Racism and Depression
The effects of racial discrimination on minority groups run the gamut—from poor self-image to depression to suicide. This overview examines how racism can lead to depression and what measures communities of color can counter this phenomenon.

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