Discussion Questions on Social Theory



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Question 1

These articles are very uplifting and heartbreaking. On one hand, we see the stories of resilience exhibited by the ethnic minorities when facing different situations from a country that is supposed to protect them and take care of them. These articles show the struggle black people have undergone at the hands of a predominantly white system for the white people and are for the white people. This is heartbreaking as black people also have the same rights as white people, and they are not exempted from being treated fairly. The article about the young boy is both striking and bewildering. This is an example of a minor child who, against all odds, has managed to remain so positive and continued to shine both academic wise and as an upright person. This is to show that despite the various challenges life throws at people, they can still rise. This, however, does not include mistreatment from the same law and country that is supposed to its people’s welfare at heart. It is bewildering to think that the pandemic’s existence would improve the living and working conditions of the people. Just to say, the only impact the pandemic has brought is to amplify society’s problems. The new normal in place is the same that was there before, and the nay difference is that light has been shed. These articles elude that as long as race is used to weigh the respect and treatment to give to people, then the ethnic minorities will continue to suffer from injustices accorded to them by different power groups. We all have a responsibility to act like decent human beings and treat each other with the respect that we all deserve regardless of race.

Question 2

Power has over the ages used to cause oppression. More often, where power exists, pressure is not so far behind. Oppression results from destructive power, with its roots deeply embedded in the global colonialism era and its conquests. In accordance with these articles, power has been used as a tool of oppression. This can be seen when the police beat up the young boy, the recent murder of George Floyd, the unjust treatment of undocumented habitants, Italians, and black Americans.  These articles have once again highlighted the plight of the ethnic minorities in the hands of influential people. It is seen that once an individual has power, they are in a position to cause bodily harm to others, poor working and living conditions, and worse, even death. Various groups demonstrate their use of power wrongly in these articles. These groups are either the police who have sworn to protect the people and instead cause more harm. These different racist societies show no empathy towards the other minorities as well as the ones putting undocumented health workers in the crossfire of the pandemic. The people who benefit from having the power are primarily on the sideline or behind the lines. This is seen when white people can get better services compared to the black community and other people of color because of their race. It is often assumed that other people of color do not belong in the country and thus poor treatment. (Belliotti 2016).

Question 3

Yes, racism is social stratification. This is because it shows how black people and people of color have been categorized into society. These categories have either been unworthy, threats to peace, and generally aggressive people. (Berry 2016). This has also been contributed to the lack of power for the black people and hence get stepped on. Racism has, over the years, impacted social mobility. This is because race has been used to change people’s statuses over the years. This means that depending on one’s race, and they are likely to be treated well or poorly. Point in case, if the fifteen-year-old was white, chances are, he would not have been bullied at school either would he have been arrested and harassed by the police. If George Floyd was white, he would have had the freedom to move around freely without the fear of being labeled as a threat to other people and would have to die so randomly and unethically. Therefore, racism affects the way social mobility works as people are not free to move around. Cultural capital refers to how people accumulate knowledge, other behaviors, and various skills that a person can acquire to demonstrate one’s cultural competence and social status. Therefore, racism affects how different behaviors are accumulated by society and how society treats black people and other people of color (Flemmen et al., 2017).

Question 4

Sociological imagination refers to the capacity to shift from one perspective to another. The different aspects of how racism affects the black community and the society at large. Therefore, it essential to change how society thinks of the black community. This is important as the change in perception helps make the right decisions when dealing with people of color.   The Black Lives Matter movement is essential as it highlights the various needs and issues that the black community goes through daily. This movement has gone to shed light on the importance of equality and how the system needs to change to accommodate black people as well as other people of color. It also challenges the ideologies that exist about black people and helps set a table that accommodates the people in the society. (Clarke 2017).



Belliotti, R. A. (2016). Power: Oppression, subservience, and resistance. SUNY Press.

Berry, B. (2016). The power of looks: Social stratification of physical appearance. Routledge.

Clarke, S. (2017). Social theory, psychoanalysis, and racism. Macmillan International Higher Education.

Flemmen, M., & Savage, M. (2017). The politics of nationalism and white racism in the UK. The British journal of sociology, 68, S233-S264.




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