At one point in clip the U. S. Census defined person as a “negro” if they were one-sixteenth black. That is. if one of your 16 great-great grandparents was of African descent ( and the other 15 were of “white” European descent ) . you were defined as “negro” . In Jamaica. people believed to be of “pure” African descent are described as black. Peoples who are bi-racial are normally described as “colored” . In Brazil. there are even more distinctions of those believed to be of African descent. The point of all this is that our definitions are culture-bound and socially constructed.
They are. hence. non peculiarly scientific and alteration over clip. This does non intend that race and ethnicity have no existent significance. They have intending because we give them intending. 1. What method do nose count census takers use to sort people harmonizing to race? A nose count census taker is a individual who collects nose count informations. Before 1960. nose count census takers were themselves responsible for sorting people harmonizing to race. However. in 1960 there was a switch to self-reporting. From this point on. persons were in control of sorting themselves.
It was no longer the nose count census takers who classified persons. but persons who classified themselves. Census census takers would merely roll up the consequences. 2. Which classs of ethnicity are used by the nose count agency? The classs of ethnicity and race used by the nose count agency have undergone legion alterations over the old ages. At first. from 1790 to 1880. the nose count recorded merely “color. ” During this clip period it was a person’s tegument colour that was of importance and there were three classs: White. Black. and Mulatto.
The classs expanded in 1890 and consisted of five steps: Black. Mulatto. Quadroon. Octoroon. and White. It was in 1900 that the word “race” really appeared in the nose count. The inquiry now asked for each person’s “color or race. ” At this clip the nose count used merely two classs: White and Black. It wasn’t until 1950 that the word “color” was wholly dropped and the nose count merely asked for the person’s race. In 1960 people were able to sort themselves. Shortly following the nose count added the class “other.
” In 1977 there were four racial classs established: American Indian or Alaskan Native. Asiatic or Pacific Islander. Black. and White. Plus there was the “Other” class. Besides. the nose count added two ethnicity classs: Latino beginning and Not of Latino beginning. 3. How have classs changed for the 2000 Census? Since 1977. the racial and cultural make-up of the state changed significantly. There were no inquiries as to whether the old criterions still reflected the diverseness that was present in the United States. So. with that. the classs for the 2000 nose count were revised.
The classs now consisted of: American Indian or Alaska Native ; Asian ; Black or African American ; Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander ; and White. The class of “Some Other Race” is besides included. In respects to ethnicity. there are two classs: Latino or Latino. and Not Hispanic or Latino. Aside from alterations in the classs. another important alteration for the 2000 nose count is that respondents are allowed to look into off multiple “race” boxes. 4. What jobs do you see with the Census definitions? The diverseness in our society is increasing.
Puting people in classs is going more debatable because the classs are arbitrary ; none of the groups have clear or unambiguous boundaries. Classifying people into a certain class is restrictive and doesn’t take into history that “people classified as “Asian and Pacific Islander” represent tonss of different national and lingual backgrounds. and “American Indian or Alaska Native” includes people from 100s of different tribal groups” ( Healey 13 ) . The nose count definitions are really restricting and they don’t do diverseness justness. Besides. there is still no topographic point for a figure of groups among the classs listed.
“For illustration. where should we put Arab Americans and recent immigrants from Africa? ” ( Healey 13 ) . I understand that it is unrealistic to hold a class for every individual group. but we should recognize that the definitions used by the nose count. the categorization strategies. have limited public-service corporation and application. In add-on. there is a turning figure of mixed-race persons for whom there are no classs. Although presently that figure is comparatively little. it is projected to increase quickly due to a turning figure of matrimonies across group lines.
How should those persons be classified? Beginnings: Healey. Joseph F. ( 2010 ) . Race. Ethnicity. Gender. and Class: The Sociology of Group Conflict and Change. ( fifth Ed. ) . Pine Forge Press. an Imprint of SAGE Publications. Inc. Sweet. Frank W. ( 2011. Feb. 25 ) . A Brief History of Census “Race” . Retrieved from hypertext transfer protocol: //knol. Google. com/k/a-brief-history-of-census-race U. S. Census Bureau. Population Division. Racial and Ethnic Classifications Used in Census 2000 and Beyond. Retrieved from hypertext transfer protocol: //www. nose count. gov/population/www/socdemo/race/racefactcb. hypertext markup language.