“Privilege is least apparent to those who have it.” Clarence Page
This week we will explore the concept of privilege and the cultural changes that have brought about inequalities and movements that have arisen to challenge social stratification.
Often, we do not give much thought the privileges we have in life. For some they are born into a life of wealth and others might have worked hard to build that wealth, but for some this is never an option in the world they live in.
With my work in Human Trafficking, I see a lot of refugees and lower income individuals. To be honest, when I started working with these populations some, I felt were lazy and could do more and other times I just did not see the privileges I had because I was struggling with paying bills or with a job or relationship.
When you start to really evaluate and look at the place some groups are you see things very differently. So how do people work together?
Diversity Consciousness offers numerous strategies for working with teams and building team rapport. Clearly, group dynamics are involved in team building.
This video, from our text, looks at Globalisation.
According to Bucher (2010), diversity can interfere with unity, and groups can often fall short of their goals. Research supports that different perspectives, talents, and experiences make some groups stronger and others weaker. But how exactly do groups form in the first place?
We will move to more a social psychology lens here and discuss group formation. According to Myers (2010), a group consists of two or more people who interact with and influence each other for longer than a few moments. Bucher (2010) states that a team is simply a number of people who are involved in some cooperative effort together.
There are all types of groups that we are each a part of in our lives. According to Feenstra (2011), intimacy groups include the group that forms when we are part of a family or group of friends. These are believed to be small, strong, and long lasting. There are also groups that are involved in specific tasks, such as a jury, known as task groups.
Task groups are less likely to last for a long period of time, yet they have a common goal. Gender or ethnicity can also be the basis for a group, and groups formed based on common likes such as sports or food are known as loose associations. Loose associations tend to be shorter in duration with little interaction among members.
In general, people tend to want to work with those who are similar to them (Bucher, 2010). The forming of a group depends on the setting of the group, the type of group, and the stage of development (Tuckman, 1965). There are five stages of group development namely the forming stage, storming stage, norming stage and performing stage.
People become part of the larger group known as citizens of the United States every day. They give up the homeland they came from for the American Dream.
Often women with no personal possessions because there was no money. They cannot work in the country they come from, could attend school or have freedom. Americans will sometimes argue they have to work too much or their school tasks are too much, but do not see the privilege they have to experience these things that not everyone has in life.
This week be open to other cultures, people and look at all you have in your own life. For example, the ability to be part of this class is something even everyone gets to be involved in for many reasons. It may challenge you, but for those people on the outside it is a dream that seems out of their hands and not obtainable.
For Week 4 the emphasis is on Cultural Change and on Privilege. In your text (Kahn, 2015), the reflection at the end of Chapter 4 has you look at areas that you are in a dominant group or a subordinate group. All of us are in some dominant and some subordinate groups.
But what make a group dominant. What forces are in place to give one group more power than another? How does the structural inequality stay the same, how can it be dismantled?
This week, keep in mind the particular topic you chose for your final project. Look up articles that give you insight into that topic as you write your discussion posts and your written assignment.
Bucher, R.D. (2010). Diversity consciousness: Opening our minds to people, cultures, and opportunities, (3rd ed.). Upper Saddle River: Pearson Prentice Hall. Feenstra, J. (2011). Introduction to social psychology. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc. Kahn, A. (2015). The ecology of diversity. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education. Myers, D.G. (2010). Social psychology. New York: McGraw-Hill. Tuckman, B.W. (1965). Developmental sequence in small groups. Psychological Bulletin, 63(6), 383-399.
This video, from our text, looks at Globalisation.
Dominant and Subordinate Group Membership
This week you are exploring what it means to have privilege in all aspects of life, whether it be that you are able to enroll in school and take this course, or that you are able to walk, type, see, taste, or purchase/have access to groceries.
Having privilege also means that you have power of some sort. Even having access to goods and services can be seen as a privilege. Discrimination can accompany power and privilege as those who have power and privilege may not be consciously aware of how they benefit from it.
First, Chapter 4 of The Ecology of Diversity (Kahn, 2015) has a “Reflections on Diversity” section near the end entitled, “Membership in Dominant and Subordinate Groups.” Follow the instructions provided in the chapter and complete the chart considering who are you are and what relationships you have with each type of group.
Second, write at least three paragraphs (300 words) addressing the following questions:
Initial Post Checklist:
Kahn, A. (2015). The ecology of diversity. San Diego, CA: Bridge point Education. Ch. 3.4, 4.1, 5.3
Sole, K., & Landrum, R. E. (2015). Academic research and writing: A guide for the social sciences. San Diego, CA. Bridge point Education. Ch. 3.3
Geiger, K. A., & Jordan, C. (2014). The role of societal privilege in the definitions and practices of inclusion. Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, 33(3), 261-274. doi: 10.1108/EDI-12-2013-0115. Retrieved from Proquest.
Hollman, J. (2017). The power of diversity: Multiple generations working together. Printing Industries of America, the Magazine, 9(4), 2-3. [Proquest]
Schmit, K. (2014). Working with different generations. Credit Union Management, 37(1), 24-26. [Proquest]