Human ancestry defines Race and Ethnicity. Race is “a category of people that shares certain distinguishing physical traits.” Ethnicities are “large groupings of people grouped according to common racial, national, tribal, religious, linguistic, or cultural origin or background.” Race is usually related to biology and physical traits like skin color and hair texture. Culture defines “ethnicity.” Both are social constructs that categorize and characterize seemingly separate populations. This article explores the concepts of the human race and ethnicity. And what is the difference between race and ethnicity?
What are Human Races?
One definition of a human race is a genetically distinct group of people. At present, anthropologists and biologists classify all males, regardless of their ethnic background, as members of the same species, Homo sapiens.
What Are the 3 Human Races?
We looked at the genetic relationship between the three main human races—Caucasoid, Negroid, and Mongoloid—by looking at the frequency of genes in 62 protein loci and 23 blood group loci. Based on genetic distance, Caucasoid and Mongoloid are closer to each other than they are to Negroid.
- Caucasoid (White) race: Caucasian people come from Europe, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, Western Asia (the Middle East), and Central and South Asia. Caucasian was originally a geographical word for central Eurasia’s Caucasus area. Later, the word meant numerous things, including the human race.
- Negroid (Black) race: The Africans represent the Negroid. They are also called wooly-haired people. There are several sub-races of Negroids, such as Aborigines, Melanesians, Negritos, Papuans, Dravidians, etc. They also include a number of tribes, such as the Nilotic, Bantu, Sudanic, Pygmy, Khosian, etc.
- Mongoloid (Oriental/ Amerindian) race: Mongoloid representatives of Chinese and Japanese. They’re also straight-haired. The Amerinds (Native American Indians) are considered an early branch, while the Polynesians are a Mongoloids subgroup with much racial mixing. As the Mongoloid group is widely distributed, “Asian” appears more appropriate. Mongoloids have East Asian, North Asian, and Native American subraces.
What Is Ethnicity?
The culture of a geographic location or its descendants is called ethnicity. It encompasses their language, nationality, background, religion, attire, and customs. A sari, bindi, and henna hand art can show an Indian-American woman’s ethnicity, or she can wear Western clothes.
What is the difference between race and ethnicity?
- Race differentiates people into groups based on physical traits, such as skin color, hair texture, and facial features. On the other hand, ethnicity is a socially made category based on a person’s language, nationality, religious beliefs, and cultural background.
- People are often put into different groups based on race, but ethnicity is used to discuss a group’s shared culture and values. This can make it hard for people from different races and cultures to get along since they have different experiences, values, and beliefs.
- People of certain races are more likely to face institutionalized racism and have less access to education, health care, and jobs than others. This is often used to justify inequality and discrimination. On the other hand, ethnicity isn’t usually used to justify unfairness because it’s more about shared cultural values and beliefs.
Race and ethnicity are social constructs that put people into groups and often explain why some people are treated differently. But there are important differences between the two, and it’s important to know how race and ethnicity can be used to keep people from being treated fairly.