How Census Race Categories Have Changed Over Time
In this week’s lesson, you learned about the U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent racial and ethnic categories. For this assignment, consider the racial and ethnic categories used in the 2010 Census with the four racial, ethnic, and gender categories used in the 1790 Census: Free white males, free white females, all other free persons, slaves (Pew Research Center, 2015). Analyze the concepts of race, ethnicity, and gender as social constructs, just as sociologists do, by addressing the following:
Explain how you might have been categorized by the 1790 Census and how you would have been categorized by the 2010 Census.
Compare and contrast the two potential categorizations and explain how this exercise shows that the concepts of race, ethnicity, and even gender change over time. Most importantly, explain how this exercise shows that the concepts of race, ethnicity, and gender are social constructs.
Determine and describe what ethnic, racial, and/or gender categories, if any, would be best, in your view, for the 2020 Census or the 2030 Census, to most accurately show the diversity of the U.S. population. What categories would be best to reveal the segments of the U.S. population most vulnerable to racial, ethnic, and/or gender inequalities or discrimination? What categories could be listed in the 2020 Census or the 2030 Census that might best educate the U.S. population on differences between race and ethnicity? Explain your decisions.
Include headings for each of the three main sections of the paper:
What the Census Might Have Called Me
Better Future Census Categories
Each of the three main sections of your paper must contain scholarly support in the form of quotes or paraphrases with respective citations from assigned reading (the textbook/lesson) and the outside scholarly source that you identify on your own.
You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.
Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.
Likewise, large type, large margins, large indentations, triple-spacing, increased leading (space between lines), increased kerning (space between letters), and any other such attempts at “padding” to increase the length of a paper are unacceptable, wasteful of trees, and will not fool your professor.
The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.
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