Race as Social Construction

1. Explain what social construction is. 2. Explain how race is a social construct. Be sure to incorporate the documents attached below as references in APA format with in-text citations and discuss the history and use of the concept. I have already started the essay, so feel free to just build on, edit, and input references from the sources below into what I already have. The finished essay must be free of plagiarism and 650 words. Thank you! I already wrote 350 words: Social construction is a school of thought that asserts that qualities formerly believed to be unchanging and merely biological are the result of human definition and interpretation modified by cultural and historical settings. Humans establish social constructions in part by categorizing what they view and experience. Social constructions do not reflect objective reality; rather, they have significance only because members of a community or group believe they do. Simply said, social structures are meaningless. They have no significance other than that which is ascribed to them by others. For instance, they observe individuals with varying skin tones and other physical characteristics and form the social construct of race, a classification of individuals into various groups based on common physical or social characteristics within a specific community. However, these social constructions can change over time and are not limited to being set in stone forever because of constant changes in behavior due to many different internal and external factors. A good example of a social construction is how the perception of skin color has changed over the past decade. Although not completely eradicated as a social construction, the human race, especially in the United States, has made strides in minimizing this school of thought. Through the use of education, regulations, and open conversations, the elimination of race as a social construction to be used against an individual or group of people, has been reduced greatly. However, there is still much more work to be done. The problem with race being a social construction is that the only validity it might have lies in the tracing of where someone’s ancestors can be traced. For example, whether primarily back to Europe, Africa, Asia, or the Americas, the ancestral isolation led to different physical traits as a result of regions. Another problem with this notion of race as a social construction is that it is very fluid because someone could be considered one race in a certain region and another in a different region. Moreso, someone who is considered black in the U.S. might be categorized as white in a South African country.

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