Title: Od „rasy” k etnocentrismu a zpět
Authors: Blažek, Vladimír
Citation: Acta Fakulty filozofické Západočeské univerzity v Plzni. 2011, č. 3, s. 58-83.
Issue Date: 2011
Publisher: Západočeská univerzita v Plzni
Document type: článek
URI: http://ff.zcu.cz/files/Acta-FF/2011/ACTA_FF_2011_3.pdf
ISSN: 1802-0364
Keywords: rasový koncept;etnocentrismus;altruismus;xenofobie;evoluce
Keywords in different language: concept of race;ethnocentrism;altruism;xenophobia;evolution
Abstract: Whereas the concept of race held an important place in history as a means by which to describe human variability or, more precisely, human populations, it no longer holds water within the frame of contemporary understanding. The variability of human populations evolved in a complicated manner in connection with migration to the most varied of ecological environments and climates. Random population-genetic mechanisms in small population groups have also played a major role. Despite considerable morphological and adaptational diff erences, humankind can be defi ned as rather genetically homogenous. The majority of people perceive the diff erences within a population as “racial” not by virtue of tradition alone, but also intuitively; the ability to discern “racial” diff erences can be explained as a result of the development of face-recognition abilities during early ontogenesis. The newborn quickly learns to distinguish the faces of close ones and acquaintances (starting with his mother's) from the crowd according to an innate schema. This creates a basis for trusting or distrusting others. These mechanisms of face recognition continue to guide us as adults, leading us to feel high or low levels of trust. One of these mechanisms is the population (or “the racial”) distinction with the eff ect of the socalled other-race-eff ect. Greater trust brought about by similarity/familiarity (and the possible genetic kinship it implies) leads to collaboration and cooperation among individuals. By contrast, lesser similarity can lead to avoiding cooperation. Associated with this is on the one hand the human tendency towards xenophobia and on the other hand the tendency to form distinct groups. This along with other aspects (speech, body decoration, etc.) could probably contribute to ethnogenesis, at least in traditional societies. Self-defi nition by means of contrast with other ethnicities could further draw attention to physical diff erences and could consequently support the idea that “racial” diff erences exist, or even justify xenophobia. ‘Racialisation’ can thus be understood as a social construct, conditioned by the need to defi ne the divide between groups in terms of diff erences. It is therefore, to a certain extent, possible to consider it not only psychologically, but also historically (developmentally), natural.
Rights: © Západočeská univerzita v Plzni
Appears in Collections:Číslo 3 (2011)
Články / Articles (KSA)
Číslo 3 (2011)

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