Thursday, November 21, 2019

Racial Identity and Racial Identifications Essay

Racial Identity and Racial Identifications - Essay Example The two classification methods often cause confusion when it comes to racial identity. Some people may identify themselves with a given race based on its cultures. However, this identification may be very different from the color of their skin. In fact, they may call themselves black but phenotypically they are white in color. Misunderstandings and confusions on whether to identify one’s race using external or internal characteristics have led to the aspect of racial identity being simplified and distorted by some people (Maureen) Simplification, in this case, is whereby an individual tries to define racial identity based on either external or internal characteristics alone. However, the definition fails to describe racial identity as a complex aspect of human nature may be affected by other factors. Many people would simply define racial identity as to refer to skin color while other would prefer to follow cultures. Others would even be distorted by the racial identity thing. ‘Distorted’ in this case meaning these people are mixed up and misunderstand the racial identity issue. ... This is a small boy who is trying to identify himself with a certain race. The boy is black in color but the fact that he described himself as black and white highlights the fact that the boy uses both internal and external characteristics of his racial identity. According to the author, the boy has both African and Irish roots. The author tries to convince the boy that he is black because of his skin color, but the boy insists that he is black and white. This shows how the writer simplifies the racial identity issue. Distortion comes in from the point of view of two different people that have different ways of defining racial identity. We are, therefore, not in a position to decide which of the two methods is best. Senna Describes herself as black in color but with parents from different races. The author writes of having a wasp mother and a black-Mexican father. She also describes herself as a black woman thereby introducing the use of external phenotypic characteristics to describ e racial identity. Her parents decided to raise her and her other siblings as black. This was not based on their skin color but their own choice. It was some sought of culture that believed that being black was a privilege and that black was beautiful too (Senna). In this case, there is the use of both external and internal characteristics for racial identity. These parents decided to raise their kids as black is a way of teaching the kids that black can be a culture. Therefore, the kids can racially identify themselves as black not only by the color of their skins but also by the type of culture they decide to embrace. This can be a simplified way of racial identification. However, it can be very hard to adopt for extremists who use color for racial identification.  

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