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Race and Ethnic Relations: Chapter 7: African Americans

Race & Ethnicity Chapter 7

Kevin Hylton

on 29 March 2018

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Transcript of Race and Ethnic Relations: Chapter 7: African Americans

Chapter 7
African Americans
Blacks have increasingly integrated into the mainstream workforce.

They are under-represented in jobs at the top and over-represented in jobs at the bottom.

Black unemployment rate is much higher.
Blacks are less likely than whites to own any type of wealth.
Only 47% of black households own their own home compared to 75% of whites.
Median household income is 60% of white household income.
Blacks are 3 times more likely than whites to be in poverty.
Commitment of federal government to civil rights
Expansion of black economic opportunities and emergence of a black middle class
Decline of biological racist ideas
Achievements of Civil Rights Era
Argued for black control of black institutions
Promoted black communities
Led by Malcolm X and Stokely Carmichael
Promoted black communities
Urged black pride
Militant phase ended as the white power structure controlled it.
Some concessions were granted.
Black Power Movement
Blacks were denied the right to vote:

Literacy and knowledge requirements
Used as a justification of slavery
1830-1860—a response to abolitionist thought
Included pseudoscientific ideas of innate inferiority
Development of Racist Ideology
Development of the Black Minority
African Americans in the Class System
Prejudice and Discrimination
African Americans: Assimilation or Pluralism?
Chapter Outline
African American cultural variations have evolved in the United States.
Black culture has influenced the dominant American culture in music, dance, language, and sports.
Secondary assimilation has begun.
Primary structural assimilation remains low.
African Americans:
Assimilation or Pluralism?
Dominative racism
—actions are taken to oppress racial minorities and keep them subservient

Aversive racism
—inaction wherein racial minorities are ignored and avoided

Laissez-faire racism
—a combination of negative stereotypes and resistance to change

Color-blind racism
—maintaining that race no longer matters
Black-White Marriages
Stereotypes of Blacks
Why do many people prefer to live in segregated neighborhoods?

Is that preference what is maintaining segregation?

Do you think steering people to a particular neighborhood still happens?
What Do You Think?
Residential segregation is maintained by both individual and institutional discrimination.

Civil Rights Act of 1968 prohibited discrimination in housing but it is difficult to detect and police.
Residential Segregation
Middle class blacks are more likely to live in integrated neighborhoods.

Blacks of every level are more highly segregated in housing than Hispanics and Asians.
Housing Patterns
Less progress in breaking down racial barriers in housing than in any other sphere of social life

Residential patterns limit life chances and choices.

Black/white residential segregation has changed little.
Residential Discrimination
Relatively few African Americans serve in top-level executive posts of the largest corporations.

Blacks continue to increase their presence in executive and managerial positions.
Economic Power
Increase in political power after the civil rights movement
Black voter participation increased in South.
Black migration to northern cities increased their voting power.
Black elected officials became common at the state and local levels.
Black presence is rising on the national level.
African Americans and Societal Power
Most sociologists believe in a structural explanation.

William Julius Wilson argued that racial discrimination accounted for earlier differences but class factors are more important today.

The black underclass is isolated in the urban ghetto.
Structural Forces
Some blame a dysfunctional culture for the continued economic gap.
No work ethic
Families without fathers
Dysfunctional Culture
Some see the economic gap as the result of continued discrimination in labor, housing, and credit.

Residential segregation makes movement out of the inner city difficult.
Continued Discrimination
Does racial discrimination continue to affect the economic status of blacks more than their socioeconomic background?
What Do You Think?
Unemployment Rates
Substantial black middle class has emerged but has had little impact on blacks at the bottom.

The economic recession of the late 2000s severely impacted black families of all classes.
The 1960s was a decade of substantial improvement in the economic status of blacks.

In the 1970s and 1980s progress was curtailed.

In the 1990s and 2000s economic status of blacks rose, but gap between blacks and whites widened.
African American Progress
Patterns of minority status are clearer for African Americans than any other ethnic group in American society.
African Americans in the Class System
Metropolitan Areas with High Concentration of Blacks
In past 2 decades there has been a migration to the southern states.
Blacks are concentrated in the central cities.
Geographic Patterns
13% of U.S. population
40 million persons
Black ethnic diversity increasing with class distinctions and voluntary immigration
Black Demographics
Were the gains of the civil rights movement inevitable?
What Do You Think?
Why was non-violence an effective strategy for the time period?
What Do You Think?
Led by Martin Luther King, Jr.
Nonviolent protest and civil disobedience
1963—pivotal year with media showing the violence against the non-violent protestors
1964—comprehensive civil rights measure enacted
1965—Voting Rights Act
Civil Rights Movement,
1950s to 1964
Brown v. Board of Education, 1954, ruled that separate but equal was invalid.
Overturned Plessy v. Ferguson
End of Jim Crow
In the 1930s, the Roosevelt Administration appointed blacks to government positions.
Blacks were accepted in the labor movement and worked in defense plants in WWII.
In 1941 Roosevelt issued executive order prohibiting racial discrimination in federal jobs.
Fluid Competition: the Modern Era
Early 1900s – confrontational and violent
Industrial expansion created a demand for labor.
Blacks moved to northern cities and competed with immigrants from Europe.
Northward Migration and Urbanization
Who was correct – Washington or DuBois?
What Do You Think?
Booker T. Washington advocated compromise and self-improvement.
W.E.B. DuBois advocated militant resistance and helped found the NAACP.
Black Leadership
Segregation was maintained by force and ideology.
Rise of vigilante groups such as the Ku Klux Klan
Between 1884 and WWI there were more than 3,600 lynchings.
Segregation existed in both the South and the North.
Measures designed to separate blacks and whites in almost all areas of life—housing, work, education, transportation, healthcare, leisure, and religion.

Plessy v. Ferguson—1896 Supreme Court decision upholding segregation and the separate but equal doctrine
Jim Crow
Reconstruction, 1865-1877, marked the end of paternalistic relations and the beginning of competitive relationships.

1877 – Federal troops left the South ending Reconstruction and the guarantee of protection.

Whites tried to reinstate their dominance.
Racial Caste: The Jim Crow Era
Most whites owned no slaves.

Planter class was a small fraction of Southern population.

Fear of competition from blacks and social psychological rewards account for the acceptability of slavery.
Slavery and the White Population
System of paternalistic domination

Total control of the slave’s existence

Master interpreted and enforced laws

Social distance but physical proximity
Master-Slave Relations

Africans’ physical and cultural traits were obviously distinct.

Indians offered greater resistance to slavery.
The Choice of Blacks
Blacks originally came to the U.S. as indentured servants.

By the 1660s most southern states defined blacks as slaves.
Slavery: Paternalistic Domination
Three broad epochs shaped by social and economic trends:
Development of the Black Minority
Unique minority group in U.S.
Involuntary immigrants and slaves
Most visible ethnic group
African Americans
African Americans
African American experience is unique among ethnic groups.
Visibility is a decisive factor.
African American Experience
Whites see fundamental change while blacks see a well-entrenched system.

Many whites see the black disadvantaged status as the result of individual reversible short-comings.
Contrasting Views
Negative stereotypes have diminished and blatant discrimination is discouraged.
Most whites seem committed to integration in secondary relations.
Majority of whites no longer object to interracial dating and marriage.
Most whites argue that blacks should have equal rights but are less committed to ensuring rights.
Changes in Racial Attitudes
Residential segregation has been maintained by:
Zoning regulations.
Redlining – designating certain areas within which loans will not be made.
Steering by real estate agents.
Maintaining Segregation
Black-White Residential Segregation
Today, prescribed discrimination has given way to de facto forms.
Prejudice and Discrimination
Blacks have increased their educational achievement both absolutely and relative to whites but continue to lag behind.
There is now only a slight difference between blacks and whites in high school dropout rates.
Persons Below the Poverty Level
Modern era
Jim Crow
To encourage immigration, the colonies provided better conditions for European servants.
Poll taxes
Percentage Black or African American by county 2000
Ursula Burns is the first African-American woman CEO to head a Fortune 500 company.
Discussion Questions
1. To what extent is African American an ethnic identity? What are the unique traits of African American culture? What does it mean to be an African American?

2. Who was Martin Luther King Jr.?; 2) What did he do in the 1950s and 1960s?; 3) Is America better or worse for his influence and why?

3. Make a list of some of the top 7 unique challenges faced by African Americans since the 1600s. Provide five explanations of why European Americans decided to treat Black Americans in these harsh ways.

4. Have societal changes been made to the point that Black Americans have a fair chance to secure social and economic rewards for themselves and their families?
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