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Paper Topic:

What is the difference between race and ethnicity? What does it mean to say that race and ethnicity are socially constructed? What is a minority? Support the claim that African Americans and Asian Americans are both minorities in the United States using

In simple terms , race is a socially constructed concept whereas ethnicity means the background of a person , where a person comes from For example , a person 's race might be white or black , but their ethnicity would be that they come from Germany or from Africa . However society uses ethnicity to define race and use race to a person 's advantage or disadvantage

As the PBS web site called Race : The Power of Illusion maintains , No one characteristic , trait , or gene distinguishes all members of one so-called race from all members of

another so-called race ' Race has been defined by society and government to create inequalities . For example , during slavery , race was defined differently from state to state . Some states said that if a person was 1 /16 African American this person was defined as black . Others said it was only 1 /8 and so on . This means that a person could change his /her race simply by moving to another state . Those that were defined as black ' had of the rights of white citizenship . For Asian Americans , court cases defined what white wasn 't , not what it was . Again , if society defined someone Asian as not white , that means that he /she could not achieve citizenship until 1952 and he /she could be banned from coming to this country as the many exclusion acts provided for . States could impose things like the foreign miner 's tax , and people would have no recourse because they were not citizens

Basically anyone defined as non-white in this country is included as a racial minority . The categories set up in 1977 clearly demonstrate that both African American and Asian Americans would be minorities . For example , and Asian American is defined as A person having origins in any of the original peoples of the Far East , Southeast Asia , the Indian subcontinent including , for example , Cambodia , China , India , Japan Korea , Malaysia , Pakistan , the Philippine Islands , Thailand , and Vietnam (Race . And an African American is defined as A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa . Terms such as "Haitian " or "Negro " can be used in addition to "Black or African American (Race . These categories are still in use today and while possibly not as much inequality exists in laws today , the categories are still used to categorize people and set them apart as non-white

Works Cited

PBS Website , Race : The Power of Illusion , Retrieved November 13 , 2007 at Web Site

HYPERLINK "http /www .pbs .org /race /006_WhereRaceLives /006_00-home .htm http /www .pbs .org /race /006_WhereRaceLives /006_00-home .htm...

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