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Sociology Assignment Question
What good is anti‐racist social work if you can’t master it?
Sociology Assignment Solution
This article adds to the debate around how far social work can be anti-racist, and in that light, critically examine the pedagogy of social work that is built to foster anti-racism among students. On the basis of the interviews of 13 white Canadian social work educators, the author succinctly elucidates the paradox that is present at the very core principles of social work. The paradox stands as social work as a practice resembles whiteness as a set of practice and when students are taught to be self-reflexive about the latter, then basically they are urged to be critical of the former itself. Throughout the essay, the author exemplifies this paradox with excerpts from the interviews and demonstrates how that often leads students and practitioners to complete inaction. She also shows how critically approaching social work can invoke major identity-related issues among students. The article concludes that anti-racist pedagogy would not be able to meet the needs of social work practice and also the projected subject with an anti-racist outlook is just a mere variation of a white subject. She concludes that anti-racist social work is contradictory and that contradiction might remain if we don’t question the very foundation of the profession—the subjects.
This article, I see, critically contributes to the discourse of anti-racist social work practices and education. It raises difficult but real questions that need to be addressed in this regard. It also highlights how difficult it is to negate something which is as deeply entrenched in the social milieu as racism.
Karlsen, S. and Nazroo, J. Y. (2002). Relation Between Racial Discrimination, Social Class, and Health Among Ethnic Minority Groups. American Journal of Public Health, 92 (4), 624-631.
In the context of England and Wales, this article empirically examines the widely vindicated relationship between racial discrimination and poor health condition of subjects. The authors conducted a regression analysis of the cross-sectional dataset produced by the Fourth National Survey of Ethnic Minorities. The authors clarified that their analysis is capable of capturing the effect of living in a racist society on an individual, but not the effect of how disadvantages accumulate over the course of one’s life or the ecological effect of living in a certain racially differentiated neighbourhood. They also considered discrimination in two categories: interpersonal and institutional. The discrimination is measured by whether the person has experienced racial harassment, and by her perception of discrimination in the workplace. The results from the analysis clearly indicate that perception of racism in wider society and interpersonal racism has health consequences. In comparison to other studies that link health consequences with racial discrimination through socioeconomic disadvantages, this study claims its novelty in linking these two through the direct perception of discrimination by the subjects, irrespective of socioeconomic status. With this finding, the essay concludes that the different ways in which racism gets experienced in the society impact health status, irrespective of how health condition is measured.