Monday, February 07, 2005

2 4

Dilip 2 4

How Race is Lived in America

Three Friends – Which of the three friends felt the most pressure? The Black Muslim Girl said she had no one to hang out with…there is such a thing as white and black behavior. Public school is the place where people of different races interact, often for the first time. In a city like Evanston, there is a “middle bulge” where people of different races interact a lot, including dating. The bulge shrinks through high school. Why? Where are the cues to separate coming from? Music, sports, advertising are racially coded. Consumption of African-American culture is an American culture experience.

Who Can Tell A Black Story? - Why the social assumption that only black person can tell a black story?

A Limited Partnership – Black man yields the CEO position for which he is more qualified than his white partner, because it would be more difficult to do business in GA with a black as CEO.

Why Harlem Drug Cops Don’t Discuss Race – Racial profiling, Dominicans believe that 90% of their community is involved in drug trafficking, other blacks support the police against the Dominican community. The cops disagree whether the shooting of an unarmed man was justified, the division runs along racial lines. The Dominican police think they would be more careful, wouldn’t have shot Aiello.

Gender Issues

Deborah Tannen – Talking from 9 to 5

She assumes that:

1) Men and Women work together more now than ever.
2) In much of American work the relational aspect of talk is an integral part of the functional aspect; communication is integral to work.
3) Talk is culturally “coded”; race and gender are cultural factors.
4) These factors influence the effectiveness of communication, and women are at a disadvantage at work as a result.

In Chapter 2, Tannen notes that women say they are sorry as a way to initiate communication; it is a part of social ritual. Men consider someone who says they are sorry in a “one-down” position, indicates a lack of confidence on the part of the person who says he or she is sorry. Because of this, men and women should be more aware of the speech rituals they engage in, and realize what the rituals of the other gender really mean. Tannen calls this “anthropological linguistics.” The use of personal pronouns shows identification with a group; linguistic practices reveal our view of the world. “Us vs. them”…speech between equals and between subordinate and superior are examples of hierarchical relationships that are reflected in language.
Chapter 4, “Marked”, says that everything about a woman’s speech and appearance is an identifier, reveals something about her, whereas nothing about men marks them. Judgments are made about the speaker as a result of markers. People are more concerned about Laura Bush’s dress during George Bush’s speeches than his dress. Men have the “privilege of invisibility”. Women’s non-functional “cattiness” at work is marked, whereas men’s non-functional speech and action is not marked. Because of the marking, women have to be constantly aware of their appearance.


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