Monday, December 3, 2012

What Race are You? ... The Human Race

What is race?

Race is a cultural method of classifying human biological variation.

Race is not a biologically valid or meaningful concept, yet race is a powerful social construction that varies from society to society.

     Racism may not be as common as it once was, but it still exists. Some people simply carry the beliefs that were passed on to them by their parents and so forth. Science has proven that everyones DNA is over 99% the same, yet racism still survives. You may find yourself asking why is race still a big part of our culture. One major reason is because the media hasn't changed still depicts differences between race and it shows in their depiction of their characters.

     Stereotypes live on in TV shows and in their ads, with "target audiences." If you look at the Brady Bunch and the Prince of Bel-Air you can see huge differences in the plots of the episodes and the writing, as in the dialogue of the families. Both families are successful, but they have different "family" values and they speak to each other very differently. Even their opening songs and intros are completely different, and even though it may be a different time period you can look at other family shows and compare them to one another.

     In one episode of the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Will needs to work with kindergartners to get enough credits to graduate high school, this is something you would never see in the Brady Bunch show. Their stories aren't as radical, for example the Brady Bunch might be looking for a lost dog while Will is trying to prove to his uncle that he is a man and should be treated like one.

    Until George Lopez had his show, I never heard of a tv show about a hispanic family. I've still yet to see a show about an asian family. There are a lot of stereotypes out there and there's also a lot of ethnicities and races not being represented equally on television.

     I'm not saying that there is some specific way to get rid of racism and these stereotypes, but if we get the media to stop portraying this division of races we will be taking a step in the right direction. By getting TV shows to portray how people are similar to one another rather than how they different, we will be giving kids a more positive message that there is no race besides the human race.

Next time you see one of these show ask yourself two things, is this giving a positive representation of people in general or is this simply another source of media contributing to the stereotypes of different races?


Phil Collins says in one of his songs "Two worlds, one family," he may have wrote that for Disney's Tarzan movie, but I still think we should live in one world with one family and we shouldn't let anything get in the way of making that a reality.


  1. I like how you gave some examples of SteroTypes that are in tevelisions shows. I really like how you said that their is no race besides the human race. I agree with you on that. I think if people would think more that way then racism and sterotypes might just disappear, slowly but surely.

  2. So very true, you opened with the most important reminder of all--we are all part of the human race. You obviously had a lot to say on this topic and said it well.

    Also wanted to let you know that I posted your "Good Bad Ugly" video to the class facebookpage, Evan.

  3. Nice. I'm really diggin' all your real-world examples. They lend a lot of strength to what you're saying. I really couldn't agree more; it was so interesting to learn in my Anthropology class that race as we define it by skin color, has no biological significance what-so-ever. Also wanted to say that I appreciate your Phil Collins reference :) haha

  4. This is spot on! Its crazy how we are being divided up and separated. You have to ask yourself though are the advertising companies and tv screen show writers at fault for writing to these stereotypes? Its what sells in the end. We as a culture have separated ourselves into groups that writers and advertisers can market. I agree that we all live on this world, we should all act like a family for the greater good!