CHAPTER 5
Physical Differences

WE HAVE ALREADY DISCUSSED the considerable variability of human characters, including the physical. Special use of the body itself, rather than tools or the mind, is a characteristic of some occupations. These occur chiefly in the outdoor group or in the arts and entertainments group. Even for these occupations, the basic capacities required are often themselves within the normal range although their development or use is above average. Apart from occupations such as these, variability in physical characters in itself has little bearing on occupational pursuits. Even when physical factors are of some importance they are usually less important than other factors.


RACE

The undeniable fact that Negroes, Orientals, Mexicans, and many other racial minorities in this country are discriminated against occupationally as well as otherwise is not the result of any relevant physical differences among these groups. Nor is the discrimination the result of intellectual or personality differences, dependent only or primarily upon hereditary racial differences, so far as these exist. Thomas points out that war demands for labor gave Negroes opportunities for employment in many fields previously closed to them. Under these circumstances they were readily integrated into industrial programs, and they have performed successfully in semi‐ skilled, skilled, technical, supervisory, and professional jobs. This is certainly evidence that the presence or absence of skills and capacities cannot be predicted from the race of the worker. Similar successful performance has been demonstrated by other minority groups. Nevertheless, the fact of belonging to a minority racial group is a very significant one for occupational choice and opportunity; however, the

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