Re: Definition of Race

John Cook (
Mon, 23 Jan 1995 03:13:09 GMT

In article <3fuanf$>, (R.
William Sowders) wrote:

> Hello,
> I need some help of professionals! I work for a k-12 school district and
> we are in the midst of a controversy with parents over the definition of
> "race" in our curriculum guides (1988). Although our middle school
> program focuses on "culture" as part of the geography course, the
> question of defining race always seems to crop up.
> We are trying to avoid having kids make comparisons of physical features
> with their classmates.
> What is the current thinking on a definition of race. I want to be
> correct, not just politically correct. Any advice you can give will be
> greatly appreciated.
> Please reply to:
> Thanks very much.
> Bill Sowders

Dear Bill

I wouldn't take anything I read on this newsgroup as in any way
definitive. So far as I can tell there are very few anthropologists that
actually post to this group. There is a huge literature on the question of
race. You would probably need more than a couple of references to guide
your way through this one. My only advise is, personally, don't believe
anyone who claims to give you a scientific definition of race it is not
possible to seperate the question of race from history or politics.


John Cook