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Genetic Background of certain U.S. Populations (Article)

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  • multiracialbookclub
    Genetic Background of certain U.S. Populations In regions of the United States where the population is predominantly of European-American or African-American
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 3, 2007
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      Genetic Background of
       
      certain U.S. Populations


      In regions of the United States where
      the population is predominantly of
      European-American or
      African-American
      descent, the description of race is often
      distilled down to "black" or "white."

      The label "black" may also be misleading
      ----- in [regards to]
      African-American[s].

      The terms "race" and "ethnicity" are
      often used interchangeably, *but*
      they are in fact far from synonymous:
      "Race" refers to differences of
      biology, "Ethnicity" to differences
      of culture and geographic origin.

      We contend that Ethnic differences
      -- rather than distinctions between
      "black" and "white" -- more accurately
      convey information potentially
      relevant to a particular case.

      For instance, a Kenyan, a Haitian, and an
      African-American would be considered …
      —`black'—(according to current practice), BUT
      they do *not* share … `biological inheritance'.

      Anthropologists have long recognized that
      the "racial" lines drawn by a society are
      'cultural' rather than `scientific' constructions.

      Within the international … community,
      therefore, "racial" divisions may not
      even be perceived in the same way.

      What is "black" to someone from the
      United States , for example, may be "white"
      to a Brazilian or a Caribbean Islander.

      The terms "black" and "white" say more about
      how U.S. society has been `structured'
      than about … `biological realities'.

      Reductionist "racial" labels often obscure
      rather than illuminate `ethnic' differences

      In the United States, 350 years of interaction
      has led to considerable mixing between
      persons of various geographic origins.

      Although the evidence of such diverse ancestry
      is at least implicitly acknowledged in the
      African-American community by attention to
      gradations of skin color, it is less frequently
      acknowledged that many "whites" have
      African and other non-"white" ancestors. …

      As for the
      African-American population in the
      United States , geneticist Luigi Cavalli-Sforza
      [13] has estimated that 30% of their
      genes derive from "white" sources.

      These facts suggest that the traditional
      racial divisions used in the United States
      are of questionable utility and accuracy  …
      The debate within the government treats
      issues of ethnic and racial identity that …
      supports our contention that the use of
      racial labels is burdened by inaccuracies.
      This seems especially true at the level
      of the routine case presentation.

      ARTICLE SOURCE:

      [13] Shipman P. Facing racial differences together.
      The Chronicle of Higher Education. 3 Aug 1994; 40:B-1.

      http://www.annals.org/cgi/content/full/122/8/614

      RELATED LINKS:

      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/991    
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1399  

      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1034  
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1032  

      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1570  
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1573 
       
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Generation-Mixed/message/1747
       
       
      .

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