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Concepts of Race and Ethnicity


Define the Concepts related to Race and Ethnicities.

The aim of the current assignment is to properly define the concepts related to race and ethnicities, which are two of the major elements in the study of sociology. The concept of social stratification will be discussed alongside the same, which will help to identify all forms of social issues that are caused due to the difference in the social class and ethnicity. The study will also highlight upon the theories of social stratification alongside with race and ethnicity. This will help in setting up of strategies that will be implemented by the social care workers to deal with the community issues related race and ethnicity.

Few of the important theories that will be discussed includes functionalism, Interactionism, culture of prejudice, conflict theory and others. This will help to deal with all mental health issues that are caused due to the social difference. The racism is believed to be one of the major issues that have caused social stratification. It is important to shed light upon the differences in the concept of race and ethnicity, which will help to suggest relevant intervention strategies. The report will also critically evaluate all the theories that will help to understand its applicability under the given situation of human community.

According to Atkin (2016), race is term that is used to categorize a group of people based on their biological and physical character. This includes skin color, stature, body structure and facial features.  These parameters within an individual differ due to their biological origin. People in the European and American region vary highly in their skin color and body structure that is believed to significant element of people identification and categorize them according to respective origin.

Wade (2017) has added in the given context that similarities and differences in the skin and biological traits have been termed as social significant. This is the cause of people treating another individual from dissimilar race with different behavior.

On the other hand, ethnicity refers to the shared cultural practices and belief that are being followed within a community. People belonging to same ethnicity share common culture and region along with historic heritages, which also provides them a fixed lifestyle. Tonkin et al. (2016), have mentioned that few of the important common characteristics of people belonging to the same ethnic background includes food habits and dress styles. Due to the globalized nature of the world, most of the nations have people belonging from different ethnic background. Most of the countries strive for pluralism, which aims to bring about social harmony between all people irrespective of their ethnic background. Walker et al. (2016) have added that geographical factors like local climate and availability of food have significant effects on the ethnic background.  For example, people living in the tropical region will have different food habits and dress style compared to that of individuals in the temperate region.  

Social Stratification and Its Relationship with Race and Ethnicity

Social stratification is an unethical practice within the society, which provides a system framework for dividing people according to their capability are divided into various social ranks of class. From the work of Doob (2015), there are some categories of people who capture majority of the wealth. This gives them greater power and status within the society. According to Sapir?Hen et al. (2016), social stratification is a special trait of the society, which is reflected through differences in individual perspective in several social elements. This difference of social stratification can exist over several generations. This is considered to be one of the universal traits of every society, which is responsible for causing high level of social inequality.

Hence, social stratification is considered to be one of the basic characteristics of every Complex society. The value of stock within this Complex society is not distributed equally among every individual. The interconnection between several components of the society that gives rise to social stratification can be described with the help of three components Theory of social stratification (Aziz 2015). This is also called the Weberian stratification, which consists of three elements namely wealth, prestige and power. Higher level of wealth and Prestige provides people with high level of power. This higher power enables people or group of individual to achieve their goals in spite of opposition from minority group on people belonging to low power category. The individual capability to possess power provides them the ability to exploit all form of social resources.

The people belonging from higher section of the society also can exercise their power for their benefit. Hence, all individual in the society does not get equal access to the social resources, thereby increasing social inequality for future generations. The group or individuals who are aiming to make more power use political influence, in order to fulfill their purpose without considering any form of ethical duties. They also gain the capability to ignore the legal system, which is highly controlled by their social action.

Issues that are caused due to the difference in race and ethnicity can be determined using the different types of social perspectives that include functionalism, social interactionism, and conflict theory. These are three of the major theories that can explain the traditional consequence of the relevant theories.

According to Craib (2015), the concepts of functionalism is one of the oldest theories in sociology related to inequalities due to racial and ethnic inequalities. This theory suggests that race and ethnicity must have played an important function within the society, which helped them to exist for longer duration. According to the believer of the functionalism racism and discrimination has a positive effects on the society thereby forming the dominant group. This has helped in shaping the structure of the society, which is of great importance for the up liftmen of the elite section of the society.  For example, the tradition of slavery in the 18th and 19th century has been beneficial to the slaveholders, who have been able to expand the capability of their business and introduce the idea of free trade. This later gave rise to the concept of globalization, and the concept of capital market was introduced. With the introduction of the racism, the superior section of the society was able to enjoy all types of economic and social prevelliages that has helped them to improve their well-being.

Theories Related to Social Stratification and Race and Ethnicity

Nevertheless, Burrell and Morgan (2017), have argued with the concept stating that social discrimination in the forms of race and ethnicity that existed for longer period has caused high level of social misbalance. The major outcomes for this include higher rates of crime activities, rising level of poverty along with unemployment. This is evident from the case of America, where the modern society is suffering from high crime rates and lack of educational opportunity especially for the black skinned people.

Olsson et al. (2015), have mentioned that the division within the society regarding the Functionalism theory is done by the contribution that is done by each section of the society. It is believed that each part of the society has to be functional in order to bring about permanent stability. There are different parts of the society composed of diverse range of elements thereby fulfilling diverse needs of the society. It is essential for all parts of the society to perform effectively to ensure high productivity and stability.

This theory was introduced by the famous sociologist and philosopher Karl Marx, who mentioned that conflict, is perpetual within the society that is caused due to limited resources. It is important to mention that harmony within the society is maintained by power of the dominant group. Hence, the consensuses of the people, especially belonging from the weaker sections are often neglected (Ritzer and Stepnisky 2017).  

According to Ballantine and Hammack (2015), the origin of the social conflict is due to the difference in the behavior and the opinions of individuals. The inequality within the society is one of the main causes of the high levels of contradiction. The section of people within the society, who controls the economic production, is believed to have the dominant power. The opportunity to have access to social resources also depends on their dominance over the society.

Salamini (2014), has mentioned about the social intersection theory, which is considered to be a major part of the conflict theory. It is believed that gender discrimination, race, and class are often regarded as the integrated part of the society. The multiple layers of the society have often originated due to high levels of social discrimination. According to the principle of interactionism, the symbol of race is considered to be the prime cause of racism within the society that reflected with the behavior of individual. These behaviors are responsible for expressing of dominant behavior of individual. It is also important to consider the fact that how people have attitude towards their race and the race of the others.

Intervention Strategies to Address Community Issues Related to Race and Ethnicity

This theory is based on the fact that pre convinced ideas related to that of the culture play the most significant step in determining the growth rate of the culture. When an individual grows up in an environment with the culture of race discrimination and ethnic difference, the behavior of the same is reflected in the attitude of the same. The discriminating behavior is believed to be reflected in the thought process that ultimately affects the decision making capability of the individual (Jahoda 2015). Hence, the atmosphere within which, an individual has exposed off plays a significant step into modifying the thinking that they will have about other races. For example, an individual growing up in the German society will have higher pride in their race as they will consider themselves to be the superior compared to that of the other race and ethnic groups. Hence, as individual grows up in different cultural environment, their thought process varies mostly thereby causing high levels of social discrimination in the global community.

According to the findings of the contemporary theories related to race and ethnicity, there exists a major dissonance between the ideas of empirical research and conceptualization. There is also the act of political activism that is causing higher levels of conflict within the people of the society. Knowles (2010), has mentioned about the fact that the concept of race with the contemporary ideas are isolated from all types of political engagement. The complexities of the ideas related to that of racism and that of the ethnic discrimination are one of the major causes of communal conflicts. This is believed to have higher levels of conflict within the modern society. The concept of racism is believed to be highly related to the activity of immigration. People from the developing nations like Asia and Africa often face the consequences of racial discrimination in many cases. This often leads to physical and mental torture of the immigrants.

There also have been reports of ethnic cleansing, done under the name of ethnicity that is done by conflict from Iran and Sudan. The political disturbances that occur within the region of are believed to be the causes of ethnic and racial discrimination in the given region (Guo 2017). The global dimension of race is also another integrated complementary idea that aims to interconnect the globalized world. It can be said that the globalized world is facing racism and ethnic distribution as one of the major issues that are causing hindrance to the global economic progress. This is more evident from the scenarios of Middle East and Asian regions. In the given regards, the following sections will discuss the mental health issues that are caused due to the effects of racism and ethnic discrimination. It is also important to highlight the contemporary issues that will help the social care workers to focus developing intervention strategies.

From the report of Takeuchi and Williams (2003), it is clear that the area of mental health is one of the highly integrated parts that is caused due to racism and ethnic discrimination. The parameter that has been used in the study of mental health and mental behavior regarding sociology has been a matter of constant debate.  The minority groups, who have been subjected to the ethnic discrimination is believed to be more vulnerable to the effects of mental health. This evident due to the facts that most of the mental health patients belong to the category of constant social challenges and discrimination.


Mossakowski and Zhang (2014), have mentioned about the fact that racial and ethnic discrimination acts as one of the major psychological stressors, which can bring about radical changes within individual. In the American region, the ethnic minority clients have been found to be reported to have higher level of mental health issues. This is mainly because most of the ethnically backward groups are not able to get the best access to mental health care service (Cheng and Mallinckrodt 2015). It is also important to note that due to lack of awareness among the socially backward, they are not able to avail the best quality of mental health service.

There are various types of population in the community of Ireland. Nearly 12% of the population falls under racial minorities of Ireland. The population of the same is expected to be double by the second decade of the 21st century (Clayton 2014). The younger section of the population is believed to be the major victims of the racial discrimination as they are not able to get the best security from the haters. There also has been reporting, where immigrants have faced racial attack. Most of the violent attacks occur within the Asian people in social places that included trains and buses. All together that has been 245 officially reported cases of criminal activity in the form of racism (, 2018).

The Immigrant Council of Ireland has arranged for roadside campaign, which aims to raise the level of awareness among the people. This also encourages the local people to take immediate action if they witness criminal activity in the name of racism.

Racism is still considered to be one of the significant social issues in the Global community in spite of all preventive measures taken in the form of civil rights implementation. Organized hate groups execute all forms of criminal activities that include preventing the minor groups to take part in social events and avail basic amenities, which includes health and education. The subject area of racism is considered to be one of major challenges for the care workers. The social care organization face the biggest threat from criminal activities. Hence, they are not able to appoint sufficient number of care workers as very few agree to compromise up on the level of safety.

In spite of all forms of civil acts that are being implemented, there are certain limitations within the legal system that prevents the social care worker to take serious actions to improve the level of security. In case of Ireland, there is a lack of unified theory concerning the need of separated child. This gap within the legal system of Ireland for protection of separated child has prevented the social care workers to take measures by making their admission in school or social care center ( 2018).

Cultural diversity concerning the global society is also one of the major challenges. The social care workers have been reported to face the issue of language difference among communities, which has prevented them from communicating properly with the victims of social and racial discrimination (Hunn 2018).

From different kinds of theories related to race and ethnicity that have been mentioned in the previous sections, it is clear that the stronger section of the society exploits up on the social resources, thereby causing unequal distribution. From the theory of cultural prejudice, it is clear that the social environment and culture plays an important role in deciding up on the behavior of an individual on matters related to racism and social discrimination. Hence, the given context it is essential for the social care workers to spread awareness among Global communities, which is done by spreading essential knowledge (Cole 2017). The racial prejudice often has a negative impact on the society as they implement negative attitude among the people thereby compromising on the productivity of a society. There is also a chance of increasing risk of criminal activities that are caused due to increase of height among the society. The primary job of the social care workers is to document all type of social prejudice activities, which will help them to prepare appropriate intervention strategies. Documentation process will also provide proper official evidence that will be in favor of the socially minor groups (Reamer 2015). It is also essential to take proper help from legal authority including advocates and lawyers. They will help in documenting the case against the exploiting group by making proper use of documentary evidence.  In the given regards it is also essential to monitor the existing level policies; this will help in identifying the loopholes that exist in the presently implicated civil acts.

It is also essential to create both short term and long term goals as a part of social care strategy. The short-term attitude includes changing people's attitude towards the minor social groups. On the other hand, the long-term goals include modification of institutional policies that will ensure the proper fundamental right for socially backward classes (Pellissery et al. 2015).

As mentioned in the theoretical portion overexploitation of social resources is one of the major impacts of racism and ethnic differences. Hence, one of the essential duties of the social care workers is to estimate the social resources that include Healthcare facility and Educational Institute. It is essential for them to ensure that all the resources and basic services are evenly distributed within the society. In many cases, it has been seen the local government has not initiated to provide extra health care and education service that is needed for ensuring quality life of the socially backward classes. As a part of long-term strategy in social care against racism ethnic discrimination, it is essential to ensure that proper basic resources are available for all parts of the population. 

Proper time scale also needs to be implemented, which will ensure that all the services are being provided to the people with proper timing. It is also required to properly review and timely monitor all the implemented strategies. This will ensure proper rate of success of all implemented Strategies.

According to Triana et al. (2015), racism and discrimination are one of the major workplace related issues in the global society. This mainly occurs due to the culturally diverse group of employees in all major multinational corporations. The discrimination among employees in the workplace can have serious impact on the productivity. In order to deal with the same an Organization needs to recruit proper social care counselor as a part of human resource department workers. The social care worker needs to work effectively with the Human Resource Department, which will help them to implement proper recruitment strategy. This is implemented properly by ensuring adequate knowledge management system within the organization.

Cultural training program needs to be an essential part of the activity within the workplace, which will help to increase the level of awareness among the employees. The care workers need to ensure proper social policy that is being implemented within the social organization, which will ensure equality in the form of equal pay among male and female employees. It is also essential to properly monitor the behavior of every employee, which is considered to be one of the practical solutions to identify any form of discrimination activities that occur in the workplace. The monitoring system can be enhanced by implementing CCTV cameras in every part of the workplace. Any form of violation needs to be dealt with strict management decisions that can include imposing heavy penalty on the convicted individual.

In major developed Nations like Australia and Canada racism against immigrants from Asian and African countries has been one of the major social issues. According to Martin and Carter (2015), it is essential to use transformative psychological approach to explore the experience of foreign student in Australia, who has been the victim of racism and ethnic discrimination. The proposed National anti-racism strategy aims to modify the overall legal system. This will help the government monitor all forms of criminal activities that occur in the name of racism in major cities of Australia. In 2011 the government implemented the anti-racism strategy, which aims to increase public awareness within all Educational Institutes. Proper education resources are also provided by the government for better quality of living of foreign students. All local youth and volunteers deployed to provide maximum assistant to the immigrant student so that they do not face any forms of negligence during the time they face become the victim of criminal activity in the form of racism ( 2018).

The anti-racism policies of the European Union focuses on raising the level of awareness among the people about diverse range of culture, especially From Asian and African countries. It is essential to develop and anti-racism atmosphere through public campaigns. This will help to ensure that the White skinned people grow the respect to provide equal status to all black skinned people. The public awareness program is implemented through famous International events that may include football match or Global discussion forum where all the major leaders in Europe collaborate to make important administrative decisions. The training session program is in to remove ignorance that exists within the European society. It can also help to raise the level of awareness among the people by making them understand that with racism, they are ultimately affecting the productivity of the society thereby hampering economic growth. It is also essential to encourage business trade from foreign Nations, which will help to increase the level of cultural diversity within the European community (, 2018).


In order to conclude the report, it can be site that racism and ethnic discrimination is one of the major social issues that has been encountered by the global society from an early period. Regarding the study of sociology the definition and origin of racism are mainly due to the difference in the biological origin of an individual. On the other hand, the ethnic differences occur due to the difference in culture and lifestyle. Social stratification is one of the major outcomes of social difference in the form of race and ethnic background.

Sociologists have defined the theories of race and ethnicity, which has helped to highlight all form of communal issues. The prejudice theory emphasis on the fact that social hateritism develop within an individual due to their cultural learning. Conflict theory originates due to severe level of competition among individual in order to secure the Limited social resources.

The contemporary theory is related to racism, and ethnic discrimination focuses on the political conflict that is highly come on in the modern society. It also uses the theory of globalization in order to properly identify the source of social discrimination. The mental health issue is highly related to social discrimination because socially backward classes are often deprived of basic services that include health and education.

Nevertheless, the social care workers in spite of several challenges are implementing strict policies in the form of anti-racism policies. They are also aiming to increase the level of awareness among individual by incorporating the knowledge of cultural diversity. Strict legal actions are also implemented in all major developer Nations, which will help to monitor all form of criminal activities and ensure strict penalty are being implemented each case.


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It is also important to consider the fact that how people have attitude towards

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