MINORITY AND REFUGEE

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South Africa is currently looked upon as a country that has undergone a tremendous transformation in its constitutional transformation from an apartheid system of government to a new constitutional democracy that is revered by many nations in the world today.

Despite this high achievement of democracy that removes the entire barrier to racial discrimination from a constitutional standpoint, yet relationship to minority and refugees group still lingers along in many vital areas of life. In certain instances xenophobic attacks are often related to the misconception of the role of minority and refugees in our country and elsewhere in the world   As a result of this South Africa continues to be a tail of two cities, where others enjoy enormous privileges by virtue of their standing in society while minority and refugees especially from other parts of the world their status remain ill-defined at present. It is out of this concern that I felt the subject of minority and refugees need to be taught as a subject in institutions of higher learning.

COURSE DESCRIPTION

A sociological analysis of relations between ethnic, racial, and religious groups.  Concerned with such social factors as dominance minority positions, prejudice and discrimination, intergroup conflict, segregation and modes of integration, causes and consequences of in-group formations, social change, etc.

 

SCOPE AND LIMITATION

As opposed to the common approach to the problems of intergroup relations through partisanship and a search for someone upon whom to place the ultimate blame, sociologists are viewing the issues involving minority groups as a fact deriving from contacts of diverse cultures and societies as well as from numerous psycho-social causes, some normal and some abnormal.

Sociologists are apt to see minorities and the dominant groups as results of social differentiation into in-groups and out-groups between whom exist set attitudes (prejudices) and who treat each other in categorically different terms (discriminations).  Prejudice and discrimination they find derive from a combination of cultural, ideological, social, economic, and personality elements.  In turn, sociologists say, prejudice and discrimination reflect themselves in interactional forms ranging from strict segregation to complete assimilation and from distinct stratification (inequality) to competition for status positions.

 

OBJECTIVES AND HOW THEY ARE MET

The aim of the course is to acquaint the students with sociological thinking about in-group and out- group formation and the consequent patterning of differential social interaction.

In addition, the course is designed to provide the student with leads readily transmittable into practical knowledge and skills useful in both their professional endeavours and their lives as citizens.

Finally, the course seeks to develop in the student a capacity for objective, logical, and critical thinking on the subject of intergroup relations by applying principles of rational, sociological analysis instead of partisanship.

Methodology:   the Principal pedagogical (instructional) methods used in the course include, even while not being limited to, discussions, selective reading of appropriate material, audio – visual means when available, lecture by the professor (and sometimes by invited guest experts) , consultations with the professor, and some independent researching.

Typically, nine study units make up the course.  Usually they are initiated by “taking stock” of what we think we know or what “mass media” seem to portray as current in minority and refugee perspective.  Next with the help of appropriate sections in the textbook or related readings, the students seek for answers to analytical questions as to the causes and consequences of various forms of minority and refugee problems.  Finally, then follows a lecture by and a discussion with professor with the purpose of arriving at useful conclusions and understandings.

Whenever possible, maximum initiative on the part of each student is being encouraged.

In summary this course utilizes a three way formula of instruction which entails

a)      Classroom;

b)      Learning Resource Centre; and

c)       Community.

A successful completion of this course entitles the student to three quarterly credits even while the classes are convening for only one and half periods per week.

 

DISCIPLINE COMPETENCIES

I, II, III

  1. To be able to analyse dominant trends in the study of race relations.
  2. To be able to provide some definitions related to the subject.
  3. To be able to establish the origins and distribution of racism.
  4. To be able to discuss race and personality.
  5. To be able to provide a typology of race relation.
  6. To be able to be comprehend pluralism and conflict in relation to race.

The above competencies are to be acquired in the first three weeks of the course.

 

Unit IV, V, VI.

  1. To be able to distinguish between racial and ethnic groups.
  2. To be able to distinguish between subordinate groups in at least four countries of different cultural background.
  3. To be able to discuss segregation and integration in three countries of different cultural background.
  4. To be able to discuss the problem of acculturation of ethnic groups.
  5. To be to discuss bicultural setting taking race as a social category.

The above competencies are to be acquired in the fourth, fifth, and six weeks of the course.

 

Unit VII, VIII

  1. To be able to access the following:

Aggressive responses to minority status

Expressions of hostility

Aggression against dominant group

Latent hostility

Delinquency as rebellion against status

In- group aggression

Deflection of hostility to other minorities

These competencies in this unit are to be acquired the seventh and eighth week of the course.

 

Unit  IX

  1. To be able to access the following:

Protest organisations

Political action

Protest in Art

Protest in humour

Protest in work performance

Variable affecting choice of response

The competencies in this unit are to be acquired in a week.

 

EVALUATION

In this course there are no traditional mid-term and final examinations.  Quite to the contrary, all evaluation of students in the course, both in regard to regular course work and in regard to  “extended responsibilities,” is designed in a manner to encourage learning for knowledge, not cramming for grades.

In lieu of formal quizzes tests, the professor is continuously judging the students on the amount and quality of class participation that is to reflect their degree of understanding of the subject matter.  Where the professor finds it necessary, or when the student wishes to find our more precisely about his work, a conference between the student and the professor may be arranged.

No more than three numbers of absences is tolerated, but because excessive tardiness makes the application of this progressive method of student evaluation difficult, students with a poor attendance record may be asked to take make-up exams in units they have missed.

Where performance is consistently under the level expected of an average student, the professor will advise the student accordingly, also suggest the steps to remedy the condition.  In serious cases, and time and institute policies permitting, the student may be offered the choice to withdraw from the course.

 

REFERENCES FOR UNIT 1-3

Pierre L. Vanden Berghe                                  Race and Racism

Cox Oliver Caste                                                 Class and Race

Coser Lewis                                                         The functions of Social Conflict

Berry Brewton                                                     Race and ethnic relations

Franklin Frazier                                                  Race and cultures contacts in modern world

 

REFERENCES FOR UNIT 4-6

Jitsnichik Masuoka and Preston Valien          Race Relation: Problems and Theory

Milton L. Barron                                                   American Minorities

J. Yinger                                                                  Racial and cultural minorities

Edgar Thompton                                                   Race: Individual & collective behave

 

REFERENCE FOR UNIT 7-8

E. Franklin Frazier                                                The Negroe in the United States

Richard Grier                                                          Black Rage

Peter Abrahams                                                      Tell Freedom

Marshall Sklare (ed)                                              The Jews

 

REFERENCES FOR UNIT 9

William J. Pomeroy                                                 Apartheid Axis

Deigler                                                                        Neither Black nor White

United nation publications                                     A principle of Torment

Albert Luthuli                                                            Let my people Go

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