Exploring the history of race.

17 Oct

Dr. Ted Vial presented a fascinating lecture focusing on the history of race.  He delved into W.E.B. Du Bois’ and Immanuel Kant’s definitions of race, and explained that race is a relatively recent construct in western history.  The word “race” appears in the English language for the first time in the 15th century, and in German in the 18th century. Humans have always categorized themselves in groups; religion, gender, nationality, tribes, etc. but using skin color as a marker is fairly recent.  It also varies in different parts of the world – what we define as separate races here in the United States does not always apply in other countries.

We barely scratched the surface of this complex topic, so we hope to explore it further at MomTime in the future, especially in the context of talking to our children about race.

Thank you, Dr. Vial, for engaging our brains and making us feel like we were back in college for an hour this morning!

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