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Race & Ethnicity Relations - Essay Example

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Race & Ethnicity Relations

THE APARTHEID South Africa has been marked with 350 years of colonialism and apartheid movement which has ingrained the superiority of fair skin, narrow features and straight hair in the minds of the locals (Manning, 2004). At the same time, have a broad nose or curly hair or even black skin is associated with ugliness. The local Zulu or SeSotho language has been abandoned in favor of English which sounds classier and associated with being civilized and educated (Manning, 2004). This, combined with a preference for music that is classic European as opposed to the ‘noisy’ African “marabi” or tap dance have resulted in the belief that it is more worthy to live the life of a “white” as opposed to a “black” in Africa (Manning, 2004). It is not uncommon to associate Africans as laborers who live in shanty, overcrowded towns and are uncivilized whereas Westerners are associated as being smart, working in white-collar jobs and being more educated. This racial stereotyping has resulted in the birth of a false ideology that the white skin is superior which is manifested in the mindset of both the white and black South-Africans. The above has its roots in the Apartheid movement which resulted in the geographic separation of humans defined through decree. It was a gradual and procedural process of systemically categorizing humans based on race. Although history has defined the start (1948) and the end (1994) of this policy, it cannot be classified as a one-off event since its ideology was borrowed from the subtle yet dominant arbitrary categorization of South Africans during the colonial era of British rule (Franchi, 2003). These colonialists had already constructed the racial difference by “Europeans” were distinguished from “coloreds” or the native Africans. Henceforth, an act was passed which divided the population into four categories namely the White, Colored (those belonging to mixed races), Bantu (native Black Africans) and Asians (that included people from the subcontinent as well as China) (Franchi, 2003). This, however, was later followed by a more severe legal implementation of the actual “Apartheid” policy that exacerbated the exploitation and de-humanization of the local indigenous majority at the hands of the White colonist minority. Social privilege was granted to the South Africans that were “white-skinned” such that they monopolized political authority to continue to enjoy this supremacy. This policy encompassed all spheres of life including political, social and economic aspects that progressively deprived the Black South-Africans of their dwellings, nationality and civil liberties. Laws were passed in this regard from 1948 to 1958 that prohibited the sharing of land, education, labor, marriage, sexual relations and social services between the native Black South Africans and their White counterparts (Franchi, 2003). Black South Africans were required by law to bear “pass-books” that contained their work and home address (Franchi, 2003). Indigenous South Africans who failed to produce necessary documents upon spot checks were later subjected to brutal treatment and expelled to their demarcated regions (Franchi, 2003). What had begun as a political oppression had now traumatized the lives of the indigenous blacks of South Africa. This psychological imprint remains fresh in the minds of many such natives to date. However, this was not all. ...Show more

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Customer inserts his/her number Race and Ethnicity- The Case of South Africa Date INTRODUCTION Racism in South Africa during and after the period of Apartheid has been of particular interest to researchers. Although the apartheid movement ended long time ago, its philosophy still remains alive in several towns of Africa…
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