Unveiling Perspectives: Eurocentrism, Black Power, and Societal Inequalities - Free Paper Example

Published: 2024-01-20
Unveiling Perspectives: Eurocentrism, Black Power, and Societal Inequalities - Free Paper Example
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Economics Students Society
Pages: 7
Wordcount: 1701 words
15 min read

When Davies states that “students can go through university and acquire a degree without taking one course that challenges Eurocentric thinking,” she means that people hold on to Eurocentric thinking and they do not find anything wrong with comparing or rather interpreting other people’s culture in accordance to the European perspective. Eurocentric thinking has been common through the ages and it has been more pronounced in the age of imperialism and colonialism. In his book, The groundings, Rodney describes the rise of black power as a response to the structures of white capitalists. Davies is keen to note that Rodney is inclined towards a political blackness termed as the “non-whites.” Rodney challenged the old regimes as well as the black rulers who did not conform to the expectations of decolonialization.

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Davies was looking forward to how the universities’ context of black studies in the united states would function outside white epistemological frameworks and still exist within the university structures. According to Davies’ statement, she tends to imply that students should be encouraged in taking a course that would challenge Eurocentric thinking this means that the university should take the opportunity and act as a catalyst for change. Davies’ main idea is transforming the university and how the students view Eurocentrism.

Rodney’s main intention of the book was to surpass challenging the racist and colonial foundations on an epistemological level. However, Davies introduces the book and gives a solution on how to fight the system of oppression and exploitation brought about by Eurocentric thinking by creating a new consciousness through ‘grounding’. This will improve the relations of the black working classes to confront the epistemological distortions of imperialism hence being successful in achieving the objective of transforming reality. This is why Davies is pushing the students to study African history to serve as a revolutionary objective. According to Rodney the study of African history is important and impacts its liberation. The study also plays a major role in the revolutionary struggle.

According to Ehrenreich foreword to Linda, when he talks of the existence of the academic discipline of economics, he means that there exists a solid explanation of how people utilize resources and their response to incentives. It also means that there is an explanation behind how people tend to make their decisions depending on what class of life they are in. In general, his foreword means that there is a comprehensive theory of how society works. For instance, Linda shows how she was forced to make her decisions according to the facets of life that she experienced. She says that people should not judge her smoking lifestyle. It is a decision to make that helps her relieve her stress.

When Ehrenreich states that the existing class structure is fair and unchangeable it means that individuals who are poor are a result of forces that are beyond anyone’s control. This is also the case with rich individuals. This insinuates that people should stop mocking the poor in the sense that if the poor people tried harder then they would not be poor. This is a complete assumption as shown in “Hand to Mouth” Linda was extremely working hard and she was not rich despite her hard work (Pimpare, 2014). Ehrenreich means that people should not be biased in judging other people’s lifestyles based on what they think that the poor or rich should do to maintain their social class.

The existing class is just fair and unchangeable in that people have to evaluate the choices that are present for the use of resources. If the resources available are adequate then the choices will differ if the resources are inadequate this explains why there is a gap in the choices, the poor and the rich make. “Hand to Mouth” shows the current situation in most people's lives. It also relates to the discipline of economics by showing the behaviors of people. Many people can work hard for long hours and still have very little to show. In this case, it may affect how they make their decisions.

Ethnocentrism can be described as how a specific culture views or judges another culture based on the comparison of its own cultural norms (Rüsen, 2004). It is supported by the belief that one culture is better than the other. Ethnocentrism may lead to the dislike of other cultures which may lead to misunderstandings and even conflicts between each other. Ethnocentrism leads to people believing that their ways of life as the correct way of living. This happens mostly when people are not exposed to different cultures. In some cases, people may view other cultures' way of life and consider it wrong and thus trying to convert the other group to their lifestyle. This is one reason which leads to colonialism. In most cases, ethnocentrism may be unavoidable since we all have instinctual responses to another person’s culture.

Social inequality arises from the hierarchies of class, race, and gender that are bestowed by the society. Social inequality can be manifested in various forms such as income and wealth inequality, unequal access to education as well as cultural resources (powell, 2016). Social class inequality results from the domination of groups of power over the less powerful groups. In this case, it is interrelated to ethnocentrism since one group has a particular power over the other. Class inequality is viewed to hinder societal progress hence the people in power are forced to repress the powerless to maintain the status quo. This is the case with ethnocentrism whereby a country tends to colonize another country with an aim of making them conform to their culture.

The class inequalities are also linked to racial inequality, gender inequality as well as wealth inequality. The class inequalities may also arise as a result of the society’s understanding of appropriate gender roles or a prevailing social stereotyping. Society's understandings are brought about by ethnocentrism by how it views other people's opinions and hence comparing it with its own.

There are various strategies that can be adapted to change the culture of ethnocentrism. One way is by cultivating a culture that avoids ethnocentrism. We need to understand that everyone’s culture is different and instead of forcing another culture to conform to your ideas we ought to respect other people’s ideas (Rüsen, 2004). We also need to learn about other cultures. Take time and research about the traditions and lifestyles from other countries and be open minded to new ideas. This will help in solving conflicts that may arise due to ethnocentrism.

Another strategy is by avoiding judgements when people around you act differently (Rüsen, 2004). We should not assume that people are making mistakes when they behave in a way that we are not used to. Instead we should learn to appreciate the differences. Above all we should cultivate a respectful culture. We should strive in treating people the way that we would wish them to treat us. The leaders in our society needs to create a culture whereby openness is prominent and a positive diversity. The leaders are responsible in teaching the society the harm that comes along with ethnocentrism. Therefore, we need to nurture the society by creating a psychologically safe environment where all cultures are embraced and everyone feels free to practice their behaviors.

When we stop being selfish and embrace new ideas and be ready to learn and explore then the conflict of viewing other people’s culture being inferior will end. We will be able to live in harmony and learn as well as appreciate the behaviors of other people’s culture. The world will stop revolving in a particular culture’s beliefs and be open to enjoying and even promoting other people’s culture. The inferior will share their ideas and their voices will be heard. Everybody will be at peace with who they are and with the culture that they belong to. The world will be recognized by its open mindedness and ability to learn from other societies. Everyone will feel welcome at any place in the society.

In addition, there are various strategies that can be utilized to reduce class inequality to make sure everyone feels equal despite of their social, political and even economical status. The government should invest in education. The present differences in early education contributes to the unending equality across generations (powell, 2016). When the government invests in education it will increase the economic mobility hence contributing to an increased productivity and a subsequent decrease in inequality. The leaders should also put measures that will help in the end of residential segregation. An increased level of racial residential segregation contributes to reduced levels of intergenerational upward mobility for the residents in the area (powell, 2016). The elimination of residential segregation by income and race will help upgrade the economic mobility for everyone.

The society also needs to create a forum whereby everyone participates in decision making (Bonilla, 2016). This forum helps in airing everyone’s ideas and it does not matter what social class the individual has. This makes everyone equal in the society. In the past poor people had been facing an inequality in participating in the policy making. Therefore, a forum that includes ideas of everyone will help bridge the gap of power bestowed to certain individuals to decide over policies that affect their community. The society also needs to promote action. When a certain group of people are discriminated it may limit their access of opportunities therefore an affirmative action would help reduce the discrimination towards social groups (Bonilla, 2016).


Fernando Bonilla. (2016). Nine strategies to reduce inequality. Retrieved from https://www.a-id.org/2016/11/08/nine-strategies-to-reduce-inequality/

John A. Powell. (2016). Six policies to reduce economic inequality. Retrieved from https://belonging.berkeley.edu/six-policies-reduce-economic-inequalityJörn Rüsen. (2004). How to Overcome Ethnocentrism: Approaches to a Culture of Recognition by History in the Twenty-First Century. Retrieved from https://www.jstor.org/stable/3590639

Stephen Pimpare. (2014). The Hard Work of Poverty: Linda Tirado’s Hand to Mouth. Retrieved from https://talkpoverty.org/2014/10/15/reflections-on-hand-to-mouth/

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