Tuesday, April 6, 2010


The word race did not appear until the 16th-17th Centuries. The origins of the word are unknown; it is thought that it has its roots in the Italian word, razza--ethnicity or breed. As discussed on the first post of this month racism is defined as:

"the belief that characteristics and abilities can be attributed to people simply on the basis of their race and that some racial groups are superior to others."

 The terms racism and prejudice are often used interchangably. In our world, there are other forms of discrimination other than prejudice based on race. Fear and ignorance are the root system that continues to anchor these prejudices in the modern world, a root system nurturing the fear of the unknown and fear of being "less than". Classifying someone's status as "less than" our own ensures that we are not the "low man on the totem pole," somehow making us superior and those different from us inferior.

  1. Ageism--judgement based on age
  2. Sexism--judgement based on gender 
  3. Geographic --judgement based location/place 
  4. Classism--judgement based upon economic status
  5. Ableism--judgement based upon mental or physical "disability" 
  6. Ethnic--judgement based upon cultural attributes (language, religion, customs/traditions) 
  7. Epidermal--judgement based upon range of skin tones (light skin versus dark skinned)