|Type of paper:||Essay|
|Categories:||Race Social psychology|
The doll test was a project carried out by Dr.Kenneth Clark and its aim was to find out children's proclivity between a black and a white doll and the reasons for their preference. Kiri Davis in the "A Girl Like Me" clip has in a similar manner replicated Clark's test and the results derived thereof are both astounding and saddening.A majority of African-American children who were predisposed to a series of questions such as "which was their doll of preference and why" provided quite interesting responses. The children chose the white doll in a number of times while showing total displeasure and dislike for the black one.
The doll test goes to show just how polarized and demeaning the society is as innocent children without their knowledge are actually conceding and admitting to the issue of racial segregation. One child goes ahead to retort that a black doll was not beautiful yet a white one was. The same child went ahead and said she looked like the black doll in terms of skin color. In a nutshell, this child simply believed that black objects were bad yet she was black.
What cultural dynamics are in play in American society that can be used to explain the choices the children made when asked to choose a doll?
History has it that numerous scientific and political bigwigs played a key role in bringing about the issue of race as early as the eighteenth century. Thomas Jefferson, a then political figure in England wrote a memoir which recognized whites as superior and Africans as inferior. While writing notes in the State of Virginia, Jefferson who later on became the president stated that "blacks were inferior in both bodily and cognitive capabilities as compared to whites". Such a statement from a prominent figure like him was not only damaging but extremely dangerous as it served to advance slavery and brutality in the black community.
The other protagonist for the above stated was Carolus Linnaeus who devised a classification methodology categorizing Africans, Asians, Europeans, and Americans as people of different origins and races. These coupled with other anthropologists and scientists of a similar mindset managed to make the black man feel and be inferior.
In addition, the US Food and Drug Administration in 2005 recommended BiDil a drug which was supposedly effective for treating heart failure in the black community only. Such racial profiling is responsible for today's children lack self-esteem, worthiness and a sense of belonging.
What physical attributes did the teen girls highlight as being important when assessing beauty within their own communities?
The teen girls spoke on the issues of hair and skin color as being important beauty markers and without which one was not considered as being attractive. For the hair, it had to be straight, blonde or curly while a lighter skin tone meant that you were prettier than average. This stigma is so real as some dark skinned girls apart from dealing with issues of self-esteem and social alienation, go on to bleach themselves. By so doing, they believe the society would accept them and not treat them as dumb, inferior or ugly.
Why do you think there is an emphasis on these particular physical traits?
Racial segregation has reached newer heights in the US with statements such as "one would not want to marry a black man for the flimsiest reason of not wanting to destroy one's gene pool". In other words, being black is associated with ghetto behavior, stupidity, tendencies to failure and slavery. That is the reason why dark-skinned teenage girls who lack the proper love of self would readily fall for the above stated. White skin and straight hair are attributes that would in a ridiculous kind of way place one in a social class that would not embrace the poor traits associated with the black community.
In conclusion, the above does not necessarily ring true as scientific findings and research have painted an entirely different approach to racial ignominy and degradation. Charles Darwin and like-minded scientists have gradually provided feasible and tangible proof that all human races share numerous similarities as far as the genome. We are all alike, we bleed when cut, and our genetic makeup is equally similar. In terms of skin color, it is argued that it has largely to do with geography and the sunny disposition one is exposed to. These are but some findings and much is yet to come. The word race should not bring forth infamy or stigma when mentioned. As a person of interest, it is important for all races to look forward into the future where one skin's tone would not matter. The fact that one is human is what should be the nation's prerogative and classification mechanism. When the world reaches that point, then racial discrimination would have been successfully rooted out.
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