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A person’s identity is made up of many aspects. Physical features such as sex, height, weight, and skin color are what people notice first – and make immediate, instinctive judgments about.

While other visual factors – including age and health – are often used to identify a person, race and ethnicity tend to present the greatest social challenges for individuals as well as groups.

Post at least three times to this discussion forum, following the guidelines below. Your posts should include responses to any questions asked, as well as replies to classmates.

  1. In your first post:
    • In your own words, define the terms race and ethnicity. How are race and ethnicity different?
    • With respect to these definitions, what are your race and your ethnicity? Is your race different from your ethnicity? Please explain your answer.
    • As you understand them from the reading for this lesson and from your own experience, which one — race and ethnicity — is a more accurate determiner of identity? Please explain your answer.
    • “Intersectionality” is a word used by sociologists to describe how personal identity (race, gender, class, sexuality, etc.) is directly related to cultural exclusion and privilege. Thinking about your personal identity, how does it help or hinder you at work, in school, socially, or otherwise? Please give at least one example to help us understand your experience.


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