Understanding Race and Ethnicity

Race and ethnicity play a pivotal role in our lives, informing how we see ourselves and the world. Communities built around racial and ethnic identity can offer internal sources of resilience. But these parts of our identity may also have adverse social implications, influencing our chances of receiving quality medical care, getting a job offer or a loan, or being wrongly stopped by the police. Despite the social significance of race, the clusters of common physical characteristics and the labels we use to describe it can change greatly over time. Ethnicity, meanwhile, may correspond with cultural practices such as the foods we enjoy, the languages we speak, and how we worship.

Recent posts on Race and Ethnicity

Geert Hofstede: A Conversation About Culture

By Marianna Pogosyan Ph.D. on February 21, 2017 in Between Cultures
Decades after his pioneering research, Hofstede shares his insights on culture’s role in our lives.

Declinism: Why You Think America is in Crisis

Is America really on the brink of disaster? Studies show most people feel things are bad and getting worse. Declinism, based on cognitive bias, explains why.
Lori Russell-Chapin

How Do We Learn to Appreciate Each Other's Differences?

By Lori Russell-Chapin Ph.D. on February 16, 2017 in Brain Waves
Appreciating rather than tolerating diversity makes life richer and more effective.

Race as a Social Construction, Part 2

By Gordon Hodson Ph.D. on February 16, 2017 in Without Prejudice
What if Chinese people were categorized as “Black," and Japanese people as “White”?

System Justification: Why People Buy Into Social Inequality

By Gordon Hodson Ph.D. on February 16, 2017 in Without Prejudice
We do not always act in the best interests of our self or our groups.

Keep Your Eyes on the Prize

By Dean Olsher MA, MT-BC on February 15, 2017 in A Sound Mind
Meeting life’s challenges head-on allows us to not be crushed by anxiety. It is this struggle that gives our lives meaning.

Think You Know the Story on Black Males? Think Again

By The Research Lab on February 14, 2017 in The Fundamentals
Historical truths that give voice to black males. By Anthony L. Brown, Ph.D.

The Privilege of Not Understanding Privilege

By Michael Karson Ph.D., J.D. on February 13, 2017 in Feeling Our Way
I don’t want rich people to apologize for being born with money; I just want them to act like they know they didn’t earn it.

Study: Immigration Is Not Linked to Increased Crime Rates

By Christopher Bergland on February 11, 2017 in The Athlete's Way
After analyzing four decades of immigration-crime statistics in the U.S., a team of researchers concluded that there is no correlation between immigration and increased crime.

Self-Actualization Through Music

By Dean Olsher MA, MT-BC on February 09, 2017 in A Sound Mind
One reason the creative arts are a powerful therapeutic resource is that they function on multiple levels. This particular song operated on at least three.

The Great Divide

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on February 09, 2017 in Minority Report
My countries of origin and naturalization aren’t even on the blacklist. I’m not even Muslim. But to exclude immigrants and non-citizens is to exclude me and to exclude people like

Welcoming Refugees and Immigrants Is Good for the U.S.

When the U.S. welcomes refugees regardless of religion, race, or ethnicity, we reap important social and economic rewards.

Is American Individualism Bad for the Environment?

The ecological crisis can be beat if Americans join the fight for environmental justice. But in the process we would have to transform the culture of American individualism.

The Platinum Rule

"Where are you from? Could this question make someone feel excluded? Following the Platinum Rule can make people feel included.

Race: The Reality of the Imagined

Ideas of race, inflamed by ideology, are remnants of a bygone age. It is time to defuse them and to communicate about the real issues that confront us all.

From Stress to Genes, Baboons to Hormones

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on February 04, 2017 in How To Do Life
An Interview with Robert Sapolsky

What Is American?

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on February 04, 2017 in Minority Report
What is American to you can be quite different from others living here in the U.S. In today's climate of racial and religious prejudices our awareness of our own bias is needed..

Slow and Steady Wins the Race

“I long to accomplish a great and noble task, but it is my chief duty to accomplish small tasks as if they were great and noble.” - Helen Keller

Clinician’s Corner: Understanding Culture and Therapy Use

Research consistently note that many African Americans may be reluctant to seek therapy. Therefore, it is important that providers understand how they can engage clients.

Might Trump's Chickens Be Coming Home to Roost?

There is reason to think Trump's immigration ban may cause widespread backlash against his administration.

The Society of Indian Psychologists' Statement on the "Wall"

By E. J. R. David Ph.D. on January 29, 2017 in Unseen and Unheard
The Society of Indian Psychologists view the wall proposal for what it is at its very core, an act of symbolic racism toward particular people, which we cannot support.
Sunil Bhatia

Banning Muslims Is Illegal and Racist

By Sunil Bhatia Ph.D. on January 29, 2017 in Culture On the Move
Consider today how young American Muslims might interpret this executive order banning Muslims from seven nations, one of which is their parents’ homeland?

Religious & Traditional Healers for OCD: Helpful or Hurtful?

When there is a conflict between approaches, your client will not choose you, even with science on your side.

To Be Asian or to Be American

By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on January 26, 2017 in Minority Report
What does it mean to be Asian or American? For those of us living in America from Asian ancestry, we are technically and practically both yet some in society want us to choose...

How Culture Wires Our Brains

By Marianna Pogosyan Ph.D. on January 26, 2017 in Between Cultures
Cultural neuroscience research is shedding light on how culture affects our neural activity and the way we represent the self in our brains.

President Trump Will Make America Simple Again

By Rupert W Nacoste Ph.D. on January 24, 2017 in A Quiet Revolution
Mr. Trump's underlying message that he would "Make America simple again" connected very strongly with the anxiety some people are feeling about so-called political correctness.

Racism in the Heart?

What the confirmation battle for Trump's nominee for Attorney General can teach us about racism and how to fight it.

Fat Cats Are Actually Slim

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on January 18, 2017 in The Human Beast
New research finds that people who are slim and tall are significantly more likely to buy stocks.

When Martin Luther King, Jr Addressed Social Scientists

In 1967, Martin Luther King Jr., addressed the APA convention at the invitation of SPSSI. Read the full text of his still relevant remarks in this special blog post.

The Irony of Expressing "Love Trumps Hate" in Hate

By Michael Mascolo Ph.D. on January 16, 2017 in Values Matter
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