Social Identities: Multidisciplinary Approaches

By Gary Taylor; Steve Spencer | Go to book overview

5.

Racial Stereotypes

Michael Pickering

Racial stereotyping cannot be understood without reference to whiteness, the racially unmarked, normative centre from which it stems. Such reference must be central to the way in which racial stereotyping is conceived as a boundary-maintenance practice, a way of designating and reifying cultural 'difference'. This raises the question of cultural racism and its distinction from biological racism. Following discussion of this question, the chapter examines how racial stereotypes operate in their attempts to give a fixed, absolute definition to their objects. These attempts in turn feed into and reinforce racist discourse and social myth. The chapter emphasises the importance of differentiating between categories and stereotypes before going on to consider changes in 'race' and representation over the past twenty years or so. It concludes with a discussion of the relation between racial stereotypes and the subjectivities of those who are their targets. Racial stereotypes deny the capacity of self-determination upon which subjectivity depends.


Cultural racism and the White Norm

In contemporary discourse, 'race' refers to people who are non-white, and denotes cultural 'difference'. 'Race' is used as a way of designating certain categories within our culture, and it does this from an invisible, undesignated position. This is the position of whiteness. As a normative position, whiteness is taken to be a natural fact, existing beyond the bounds of consideration. It is not racially marked as white in the way that black is so marked. Newspapers do not routinely refer to someone as a 'white'lecturer or lawyer, whereas the adjective 'black' is commonly appended to descriptions of someone non-white who occupies these professional posts. The adjective racially marks an aberration from the white norm, drawing attention to their skin colour in a way which doesn't generally happen for people who are white. Whiteness is what is standard, regular and tacitly expected as such. That is why it remains racially unmarked. It signifies sameness, not difference.

When a category becomes racially marked, a first step has been taken towards racial stereotyping. It does not of course apply only to black people. Certain white people, such as Jews or the Irish, have been racially marked in

-91-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Social Identities: Multidisciplinary Approaches
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • 1 - Introduction 1
  • 2 - Social Class 14
  • 3 - Gender 35
  • 4 - Sexuality 64
  • 5 - Racial Stereotypes 91
  • 6 - Mixed Race 107
  • 7 - English Character and Identity 129
  • 8 - European Identity 145
  • 9 - Paganism 162
  • 10 - Mass Media 182
  • 11 - Ethnic Communications 199
  • 12 - Music 218
  • 13 - Cyber Identity 235
  • Index 253
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 262

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.