Identifying Race

Nils Zurawski (zurawsk@UNI-MUENSTER.DE)
Thu, 22 Aug 1996 14:34:48 +0100

To all discussing this and the others following the thread,

I was following this very interesting (and sometimes harch ) discussion,
which seems to come to some conclusions. I appreciated it very much,
because I am just started writing on ethniicity and wanted first of all (in
my paper) make clear what race has to do with that. I came to similiar
conclusion, but with much less knowledge of the research and the literature
from physical anthropology. (I am a sociologist/ethnologist).

I abondoned race as a concept for social ends and but ethnic or ETHnie
instead, following Chuck Coker in his argumantation quite a bit.

Now that I got interested a little more in the discussed issues on that
matter, I would like to know if you could name some authors or some
articles to read??

The reaso why I abondoned the ter race and its connotation (social) for my
work is, because it doesn't help hwen it comes to so called 'we'-groups and
the concept of self determined ethnic/cultural groups. I believe the term
ethnic may cover the dynamics of human collective behaviour better than
race ever can.

That does not keep me from examining processes where physical
characteristics play a role. where discrmination, racisms and the like
determine the situation of groups that might in fact should be called

I can see that there are differences and that their research may be good
for some purposes like medical research and prevention.
I also see the tight connection between 'constructed' ethnic believe and a
groups own believe as distinct in all aspects, even from other people, i.e.
being a different race.

reseacrh on 'races', clines' etc should make absolutley clear what it is
about, as any other research of course, but esspecially here, there it
might be less misused as 'folk genetics' with its somewhat twisted views
and ideas.

Thanks for all the innformation.

Nils Zurawski
Muenster/Germany 22.8.96