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Race and Anthropology Essay

  • Submitted by: anonymous
  • on December 15, 2008
  • Category: Shakespeare
  • Length: 429 words

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Below is an essay on "Race and Anthropology" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

Although one’s skin color is really just the result of different biological factors, the different colors of skin have been the basis for racism for thousands of years. Dating back to 3000 B.C, the human population as a whole has been categorized as “red for Egyptians, yellow for people to the east, white for people to the north, and black for Africans to the south.” This system of classifying people based on their skin color is also seen in the book of Genesis, where Ham sees his father naked and drunk, is cursed, and is sent to become the “father of the Black people” (Scupin, 412). The various skin colors of different populations became linked to stereotypical behaviors and has often led to “racial discrimination” (413).
Joseph Arthur de Gobineau defined the Aryan race as the “super race” in 1854. He believed that the Aryans had the greatest amount of intelligence and were the strongest race. Gobineau also connected the fall of the Hindu, Egyptian, Assyrian, Greek, Chinese, Roman, German, Medican, and Peruvian civilizations to the “racial mixing” of Aryans and “non-Aryan” people. Adolf Hitler, another racist, built off of Gobineau’s beliefs in the 1930s. He believed that Germany should be transformed into an Aryan society in order to advance and become a major world power. This was his justification for the “annihilation of millions of Jews and other non-Aryan people” (414).
Slavery is another example of an inhumane justified by the difference of skin. People with black skin were regarded as the lowest class, and were therefore sold for labor, and treated like animals. I think that it is ridiculous that a simple biological difference, which causes some people to have darker skin, is the basis for large amounts of racism and discrimination. It has also led to racism within populations; African Americans with lighter skin are often regarded as more beautiful than those with very dark skin. This is also seen in Fernea’s ethnography. Having lighter skin is even...

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