Perceptions of Racial and Ethnic Identities

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Part one: Influence of Media on Stereotypes

In your text, Framework Essay III explains how Asian Americans often are stereotyped positively, while African Americans often are stereotyped negatively.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Review the “Framework Essay” in Section III and Readings 13, 31, and 33 in the course text. (Rosenblum, K. E., & Travis T. C. (2016). The meaning of difference: American constructions of race and ethnicity, sex and gender, social class, sexuality, and disability (7th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill). Pay particular attention to stereotypes and media representations of racial and ethnic groups.
  • Think about how media influences racial and ethnic stereotypes.
  • Consider positive and negative stereotypes that you are aware of.
  • Watch a television sitcom, a drama, a news program, a talk show, or the commercials aired during one of these types of shows. Identify one example of a positive racial or ethnic stereotype and one example of a negative racial or ethnic stereotype.
  • Consider how the racial or ethnic stereotypes in the media that you viewed may influence viewers’ perceptions of race and ethnicity.

With these thoughts in mind:

Post one example of a positive racial or ethnic stereotype that you viewed. Explain why you identified the stereotype as positive. Then, post one example of a negative racial or ethnic stereotype that you viewed. Explain why you identified the stereotype as negative. Finally, evaluate how the stereotypes that you identified might influence viewers’ perceptions of race and ethnicity. Provide specific examples to illustrate your explanation.

Part two: Perceptions of Social Class

To prepare for this Assignment:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources. Pay particular attention to the definitions of wealth, power, and the tri-racial stratification system in the article, “From Bi-racial to Tri-racial: Towards a New System of Racial Stratification in the USA.” (Bonilla-Silva, E. (2004). From bi-racial to tri-racial: Towards a new system of racial stratification in the USA. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 27(6), 931–950. doi:10.1080/0141987042000268530).
  • Consider the impact of the tri-racial stratification system on perceptions of race and ethnicity.
  • Think about how race, power, and wealth might influence people’s perception of social class
  • Reflect on whether race, power, or wealth might have the most influence and why.

The Assignment (3–4 pages):

  • Explain the impact of a tri-racial system on societal perceptions of race and ethnicity. Provide specific examples.
  • Separately analyze the impact of race, power, and wealth on people’s perceptions of social class. Provide specific examples for each.
  • Explain which you believe has the greatest influence on people’s perceptions of social class and justify your response.

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