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Your view on race

  1. Jul 2, 2012 #1
    your view on "race"

    anthropologist have debated this for years....

    is there such thing as "race" are people different races

    are mongolians, caucasians, africans different to an extend that they would be classified as a different "race"

    or is "race" just a social construct

    is there differences in the different "races"

    are some races advantaged at some things compared to others


    whats your opinion
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 2, 2012 #2

    arildno

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    Re: your view on "race"

    Do "numbers" exist?
    it depends on how you define "numbers", and what criteria you place on "existence".

    first off:
    Anthropologists are an utterly irrelevant group to debate "race".

    It is a trivial fact that:
    There exist distinct lines of descendence of mankind, with many subclusters that have evolved, reproductively speaking, wholly independent of each other for a number of milennia.
    Those subclusters are readily identified by a number of diverging genetic criteria, and if you like to call them different "races", you can do so if you wish. Or choose not to, if you don't wish.

    As for relative "advantages":
    It is advantageous in southern climes to retain maximum melanin production in the body, rendering it "dark" skinned.
    So, yes, different clusters of mankind, as long as they have had enough separation time, will have developed divergent aptitudes in order to optimize their local functioning, whenever the distinct localities are so distinct that they require slightly different skills to function in..
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    As for blatherings about "social constructs", they are just that: Blatherings, and nothing-explaining pseudo-explanations performed with accompanying meaningless and noisome brouhaha.
     
  4. Jul 2, 2012 #3

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: your view on "race"

    "Race" is not a biological distinction of humans and arguably is just a social construct. That's not to say that certain races aren't genetically distinct from others but in many cases different races have the same genetics and conversely the same race can contain many different genetic groups.
     
  5. Jul 2, 2012 #4

    Pythagorean

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    Re: your view on "race"

    Race is often classified by appearance, which is not the whole genetic story. To restate what Ryan said, people across different races can sometimes be more genetically similar than people within a race because within each race, there is plenty of genetic diversity.

    So I think yes, race is a social construct the way most people use it: (where you're from and what you look like).
     
  6. Jul 11, 2012 #5
    Re: your view on "race"

    General homogeneity does not preclude the existence of group-specific gene combinations. What you're both describing is Lewontin's fallacy.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lewontin's_Fallacy

    A.W.F. Edwards made an excellent rebuttal concerning this.

     
  7. Jul 11, 2012 #6

    Pythagorean

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    Re: your view on "race"

    I think you're confusing our weak versions of Lewontin's argument with his strong version. As the first sentence points out, it really depends on how you're asking the question. Ryan and I also seem to also both concede to there being a genetic distinction (him explicitly, me by way of qualifier).

    But we're really talking about how the word "race" is used by the public. I can assure you that they are not counting allele frequencies (which I would liken more to phenotype than race; the concept of race implied genotype to me the way I most often hear it used.. realize that it's not a word we use when studying birds, worms, or squirrels... it's not part of a standard classification scheme that I know of.)
     
  8. Jul 11, 2012 #7

    Evo

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    Re: your view on "race"

    And the rest of the wiki argues against. (referring to aroc's post)

    continued
     
  9. Jul 11, 2012 #8
    Re: your view on "race"

    Ah, I see.

    Regarding the general population- true. How about dog breeds? We call them different breeds instead of different races, but I feel like it's analogous (besides the much greater amount of homogeneity in humans relative to dogs).

    I'm not so sure. I don't think the sections you've selected necessarily invalidate Edward's argument, they just point out that the differences don't really matter in the end. It's all just anthropology and I definitely agree with that position. So, can we make distinctions? Sure. Do they matter? Absolutely not. The most relevant racial differences are medical, I think. Tay Sachs susceptibility in Ashkenazi Jews, mutated acetalaldehyde dehydrogenase in Asian populations, that sort of thing.
     
  10. Jul 11, 2012 #9

    Pythagorean

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    Re: your view on "race"

    dog breeders are not biologists, they don't care about the molecular story or the evolutionary story, they mostly just carea bout functional results. Race is similarly used by sociology applications (demographic studies, mostly) and in many cases the behavior being recorded is a results of cultural and environmental conditions.

    For example, crime among black Americans in the US probably has a lot more to do with them having been shoved tightly into neglected sections of community and thus, receiving a terrible quality of education and social support then it has to do with any genetic aspect of personality/behavior.

    I guess it's not a question of whether race is genetic or race is social so much as which aspect dominates particular interactions. Obviously, there's a huge problem with the social aspect of race dominating interactions (which is why we develop policie to counter it). With disease, on the other hand, the genetic component can become very important (but there's still envrionmnetally-driven disease, of course! Disease is a tricky one.)
     
  11. Jul 12, 2012 #10

    chiro

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    Re: your view on "race"

    Morgan Freeman once quoted when asked about race to "not bring it up" or "talk about it"



    The best solution to this stupid problem.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  12. Jul 13, 2012 #11

    Bobbywhy

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    Re: your view on "race"

    catdogking, I cannot define what is "race". One thinks of "white, black, red, brown, etc." as separate races, but I don't know where you can draw a clear line and say "she is of X race, and he is from Y race" when there are so many mixutures.

    Just as an observation: After living and working in the Far East for many years I can easily tell you, just by looking, if a person is Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, or Thai. Now, am I defining separate "races"? I am not sure. But their facial characteristics are all that's necessary to know that "ethnic" difference.
     
  13. Jul 14, 2012 #12
    Re: your view on "race"

    My view on race? Winner takes all.
     
  14. Jul 14, 2012 #13

    nsaspook

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    Re: your view on "race"

    Crime in black America has more to do with the destruction of the family due to well meaning but counter-productive measures that made fathers unnecessary due to government rules that only supported women with children if no man is around to help. I was in school 1964 when separate but equal was abolished in Texas, the social divide between black and white could have not been wider then but the black family was still mainly intact so even the poorest black areas crime was very rare. The future destruction of fatherhood in black man was seen by some early but cries of racism drowned them out.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Negro_Family:_The_Case_For_National_Action

    The genetic aspect of race is meaningless as new poor African family's in this country mainly have completely different social and personal expectations while experiencing poverty and crime.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2012
  15. Jul 14, 2012 #14

    Evo

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    Re: your view on "race"

    We really don't want to get too deeply into social racism as it always ends up in flame wars (it attracts people from the internet wanting to push racism). So far the thread has avoided this, I'm impressed.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2012
  16. Jul 14, 2012 #15

    Astronuc

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    Re: your view on "race"

    There are many factors surrounding one's race. For example, there are historical, geographic, which include ethnic factors, and economic factors, as well as current environmental factors, which may or may not transcend race, and there are complex interrelationships with respect to these factors.
     
  17. Jul 14, 2012 #16
    Re: your view on "race"

    As others have pointed out, there are slight, but apparent, genetic differences between certain races.

    For example, different diseases are present in different areas. This means that some races have been exposed to diseases that others haven't been exposed to, which often leads to that particular race having a gene that protects them from that specific disease, which other races would not have.

    No race is intrinsically better than another. Each has had their own history, each has developed in different areas, but they all are human.
     
  18. Jul 15, 2012 #17
    Re: your view on "race"

    you ever ben to the natural history museam in dc, something is wrong here.
     
  19. Jul 15, 2012 #18
    Re: your view on "race"

    What exactly is wrong here? It's difficult to draw a conclusion from a vague, poorly written statement.

    The Smithsonian unveiled an exhibit last year called RACE: Are We So Different? The main purpose of the exhibit (from what I've read from various blogs and the website of the exhibit itself) is to examine the various factors that have played into the separation of humanity that has been attributed the terminology of race. These range from religion, in the Middle Ages, to the current widespread interpretation of race; mainly skin color and facial appearances.

    I don't see how anything that we have discussed thus far contradicts the exhibit at the Smithsonian. Sure, some of us have pointed out that there are slight genetic differences, and how the pigmentation of skin is clearly different for beneficial reasons regarding protection from the sun, but nobody here has expressed any belief that races are different, and some of us wonder if "race" is a word that we should even be using.

    I'm mainly just confused about your post. If you were attempting to agree with what has been said so far, then your mentioning of that exhibit fits in very well with the discussion. It's the phrase "something is wrong here" that makes me think that your intentions are elsewhere.
     
  20. Jul 15, 2012 #19
    Re: your view on "race"

    if i post i'll look like a racist, lmfao
     
  21. Jul 15, 2012 #20

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: your view on "race"

    If your information is incorrect and racist then you will yes, if it is the result of credible science then no you wont.
     
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