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Biology and The Persistence of Race and Ethinicity - Essay Example

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Steve Olson, in a chapter titled "the end of race" that appears in hid book "mapping human history" has cited Hawaii as an exemplification of the future of the human race. Ironically though, Hawaii has not even attained racial illusion (Olson 2002). The social class of the residents of the state positively correlates with the average latitude of the ancestral homeland of the residents…
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Biology and The Persistence of Race and Ethinicity
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Download file to see previous pages Not even attempts by interracial marriages to overshadow ethnic boundaries have lessened the resolve by the native Hawaiians to have their state declared a sovereign nation, much like the tribe of the American Indians. When races have thus been mixed up, other new races are brought forth, as opposed to no race at all (Olson 2002).
For example, the Angles and Saxons led to the formation of Anglo-Saxons. Thorough this chapter, Olson has argued on the variation in our appearances, yet genetically, we seem to be so similar. This then leads to the question of mis-paring that is so apparent with regard to genetic similarity on the one hand, and physical appearance on the other hand.
Racism is not just about being Asian, American, European, African, or black. Even within a particular race, class system does exist. Therefore, even if racial lines were to be scrapped off, the class system in such races will still discriminate on heir underprivileged lot. For example, the Indians have a caste system that recognises some of its members to belong to the royal class, while others are more peasants. It will thus take more than a changing of mind from a racial perspective to ensure that such a prestige no longer exists.
The correlation between biology and ethnicity in Hawaii is quite loose, partly because individual tend to identify themselves ethnically on the basis of who their ancestors were, as well as based on those groups that they would wish to belong to. For these reasons, the scientific value of using the term native Hawaiian, tends to be particularly limited. Olson is of the argument that biology per se may no longer serve as the foundation for race (Olson 2002).
Even then, society and traditions may still have an influence over how certain people live, and this does not in any way make such a group a race. For instance, although white children may talk in their language of black children and also copy their dressing code, they still remain white on the basis of biology. Thus, other factors such as politics and culture, and not just biology, will impact on race.
The island of Hawaii is a representation of a break from the traditional understanding of politics and race. As Olsen has argued, Hawaii might as well be the future of the rest of the United States, with respect to the acceptance accorded to diverse racial groups, and interracial marriages (Olson 2002). Given that relationships and interracial marriages have reached a record high in he rest of the country are now at an all time high, one can then concur with the arguments of Olsen. Hawaii stands out as unique state, owing to the various occupants that arrived from Asian and European countries, such as the Philippines, Korea, Japan, and China, to make the state their home.
Further Olsen has also written about a man who had ancestors tracing their roots to the native Hawaiians, the Japanese, German and Irish. The man, according to Olsen, now has four daughters (Olson 2002). If the ancestors of these girls are so mixed up, what then, will become of the future generations Were the daughters of this man to marry men with complex ancestry, or plainly put, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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