Sociology

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INTERNET ASSIGNMENT WEEK 5

Racism and prejudice has been present in almost every civilization and society throughout history.   Even though the world has progressed greatly in the last couple of decades, both socially and technologically, racism, hatred and prejudice still exists today, deeply embedded in old-fashioned, narrow-minded traditions and values.  

Racism is a case of misplaced hate and ignorance, being not only discriminatory, but also seemingly foolish with disregard of all human commonsense.   Why does racism still exist in today's world? If it still occurs, has the world really progressed at all?   Through extensive research methods and wide reading, it can be proven that racism is still present in the modern world.

Racism is based on the belief that one's culture is superior to that of others, and this racial superiority provides justification for discrimination.   Racism begins with categorizing by race, and therefore stereotyping particular cultures.   A simple definition of prejudice given by St Thomas Aquinas states prejudice as "thinking ill of others without sufficient cause".Racism is a major issue in today's society, affecting a large number of the world's population and causing political and social turmoil.   College campuses are among the most racially diverse settings in our segregated society. For many students, especially non-Hispanic whites, college represents the first time they have come into significant contact with members of other groups. Using data from the National Longitudinal Survey of Freshmen, this paper explores the effects of campus diversity and interracial contact on the racial and ethnic attitudes of white students over the course of four years in college. While the percent black on campus has a positive effect on the formation of friendships with black students in the first year of college, neither campus demographics nor these friendships has a significant effect on interracial attitudes towards blacks in general in the senior year for the white students in the sample. However, the student’s own rating of their degree of interaction with black students does a significant impact on lowering negative black stereotypes expressed in the senior year. Campus demographics were also significantly related to the formation of Hispanic friendships for white students, but had an unexpectedly negative effect on Hispanic social distance and stereotypes expressed in the senior year. Close contact with minorities in extracurricular activities, however, reduced social distance expressed towards Hispanics in the senior year and having a Hispanic roommate was significantly related to lowered stereotypes of Hispanics. In addition, the student’s self-assessment of their degree of interaction with Hispanic students was related to lower negative stereotypes in the senior year.Minorities, immigrants, and foreign nationals face exceptionally tough challenges at college. They frequently face cultural and racial differences that can interfere with their personal, social, and academic growth. In some cases, the family identity conflicts with the emerging new identity of the young adult away from home. In other cases, family expectations based on the culture of their country of origin cause the student to feel guilt and shame during this time of self-exploration and growth. These students are especially vulnerable to the emotional tug-of-war between new opportunities and family expectations. And most important, they very often feel tremendous pressure to fulfill the expectations of parents who have struggled very hard to reach this country, provide a safe and secure home for their families, achieve a level of economic success sufficient to send their kids to good schools (often as the first in their families to attend college), and now assume their hopes and dreams will be fulfilled by this new generation of more educated, accomplished, high-achieving candidates for professional careers....
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