The movie, The Help, is full of social issues, the largest of which is obviously racism, followed by that of sexism of both men and women, classism of both genders and races and even mentions of ageism with certain characters.
According to the textbook, “Race and ethnicity form one of the three main axes around which social inequality has most often been structured throughout history, the other being class and gender.” (pg.159) Unequal practices that are associated with race include a range of possible activities that drop the life chances of particular race and ethnic groups, that are said to belong to certain racial groups. For example individuals misunderstandings and prejudices, institutionalize racism that is deep within major public services such as, law enforcement, education or in extreme cases like, slavery. “This can all arise from the observed characteristics and appearance of certain races which can also be indications of their ‘inferior’ dispositions
Andrea Smith in the “Heteropatriarchy and the Three Pillars of White Supremacy” argues how women who are victimized by white supremacy should not be joined a union based on their oppression because they are oppressed differently. She describes the previous framework having five races, which are Native women, Black women, Arab/Muslim women, Latinas and Asian women all mix into one group of women of color. She proposes viewing oppression of women of color through a model known as the “Three Pillars of White Supremacy.” The three pillars are divided into Slavery/ Capitalism, Genocide/Capitalism, and Orientalism/War.
Unfair laboring and immigration in the United States has affected Latinas/os lives for decades. In the United States millions of Latina/o citizens, emigrants, and immigrants have dealt with bias, racially segregated, and limited positions in regards to labor. They have been limited to blue collar jobs with low wages, no benefits, and hardly any raises. In the article, “Heteropatriarchy and the Three Pillars of White Supremacy”, Andrea Smith argues, “This framework does not assume that racism and white supremacy is enacted in a singular fashion; rather, white supremacy is constituted by separate and distinct, but still interrelated, logics.” (Smith 67). I believe that Andrea Smith’s two of the Three Pillars of White Supremacy: Genocide/Colonialism and Orientalism/War fits with Latina/o labor and immigration. I also believe that her first pillar of Slavery/Capitalism could be displayed slightly differently to be more suitable with Latina/o labor and immigration. In this paper I will argue how the two out of the three pillars fit with Latina/o labor and immigration. I will also argue and propose a new pillar to represent Latinas/os labor and immigration. I will also argue how sexuality, power, and gender play a role in these three pillars.
Although our culture is said to be completely removed from the idea of racial discrimination, this sense of inequality can be seen occurring behind the scenes within our society. Within the subtopic of race, several areas including our current culture, social psychology and the current format of our social institutions allow for the production and often the reproduction of racial discrimination in our day and age. Throughout this course, the various readings and class lectures have been very beneficial when examining the impact that racial discrimination and inequality has on our society. In this paper, I will delve into the subtopic of race and ethnicity and expound on how it is greatly influenced by our culture, social psychology, and social institutions around us today.
Racial discrimination dominated over social classes creating an unfair way to divide people. "In all areas of life, Americans were persuaded that the major races - black, Indian, Asian, and white - could not and should not live or work together and certainly not as equals." (Smedley 221) All other races were homogenized, regardless of education, skills, language, religion, income, or place of origin, into one simple category. Class separation was temporary and situational, as so many Americans were quick to uncover. White Americans believed that anyone who succeeded in business, politics, entertainment, or their professions automatically improved their class status and eliminated the barriers to upper class institutions. Class barriers can be surpassed; race barriers can not.
For centuries Africa American’s have been stripped from their freedom, their history, and their human rights due to racism and white supremacy. However, in 1868 there was a light at the end of the tunnel, African Americans thought there was an end to racism and the beginning of equality when the 14th Amendment was created. The 14th Amendment stated, “All persons born in the United States are citizens of the United States… no state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law”(The Founding Fathers) With the privilege of being a citizen a person is entitled to universal freedom (Walton, Smith). Even though the 14th amendment enforced that the state shall not deny privileges to citizens, it never brought about equality for African-Americans because of racism. The Amendment was intended to create equality, however its meaning was misinterpreted and ultimately benefit white males. Because of this, it denied them of their right to freedom from barriers created to keep African Americans inferior such as Jim Crow Laws, Gorilla Warfare for Voting, and Institutional Racism.
In our daily basis we are bombarded with millions of images, but we rarely stop to think about what those images mean and what they are persuading us to do. Images can be found in many forms, newspapers, magazines, internet, radio, television, smart phones, social media and billboards, amongst other forms. Images have power, which is why individuals need to understand the messages being sent to them.
Sexism is the idea that one gender, predominantly female, is secondary to the other. Now, sexist thinking is the thoughts or actions that a person develops from believing a gender is superior to the other. This often leads to the idea of gender roles which Suzanna Kessler in “The Medical Construction of Gender” on page six explains as the “cultural expectations of one's behavior as “appropriate” for a female or male.” If a person does engage in sexist thinking, they may believe that phrases like, “Girls cry all the time and are way too emotional”, a real phrase a male has said to me, are justified to speak. Andrea Smith, the author of “Heteropatriarchy and the Three Pillars of White Supremacy”, helps explain why our society thinks this way by explaining on page 72 that “In order to colonize peoples whose societies are not based on social hierarchy, colonizers must
In Anderson and Collins’, chapter on “Why race, class, and gender still maters” encourage readers to think about the world in their framework of race, class, and gender. They argued that even though society has change and there is a wide range of diversity; race, class and gender still matters. Anderson and Collins stated, “Race, class, and gender matter because they remain the foundation for system of power and inequality that, despite our nation’s diversity, continue to be among the most significant social facts of peoples lives.” (Anderson and Collins, 2010) When I was a little girl, I never knew that people were classified in to groups such as race, class, gender. I knew there were people that had a different color of skin than
• Gain a deeper understanding of white supremacy and white liberal racism. • Encourage thinking in an intersectional manner. • Learn how to become an effective and strategic ally. • Understand your own privileges and shame.
“Think about race in its universality. Where is your measurement device? There is no way to measure race. We sometimes do it by skin color, other people may do it by hair texture - other people may have the dividing lines different in terms of skin color. What is black in the United States is not what 's black in Brazil or what 's black in South Africa.”-Dr.Goodman, Race: The Power of an Illusion
The chapter discusses white progressive views on racial issues and questions their views differ from those of past generations. The author describes past racial views to those of a fictional television character named Archie Bunker. This character was a bigoted person with strong racial views that still resonates today. However, the author did profile white racial progressives; he suggested that these individuals are more likely to be young white women from a working class background. These individuals are more likely to have close personal relationships with minorities in general, showing support on many racial issues such as interracial marriage, affirmative action and racial injustice.
Explanations that justify the use of racism directly relates to differential treatment of minority groups and contributes to racism’s existence as an unstoppable social problem. The foundations of these explanations are based on the common misunderstanding of the definition of race. Thus, problems that tend to concentrate in one race are mistakenly judged as “race problems”. This judgement leads to the establishment of a system of inequality between a superior race and inferior races. However, the logic behind these explanations don’t account for the true reasoning behind minority individuals value status. In fact, these explanations contribute to minority individuals’ further struggle in life.
A Tate Taylor film, The Help (2009) emphasizes the extreme, racially-charged stereotypes thus endorses racial thinking. Blacks in this film are represented broadly as common house maids, or domestic slaves, but specifically as oppressed, unhappy, impoverished, and products of hardship through the utilization of racist stereotypes and juxtaposition with the lives of affluent whites in the southern United States, a juxtaposition which immortalizes the racial gap between whites and blacks.