Race, Class, Gender, And Sexuality In Everyday Life And Film

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In Lynn Weber’s essay, the topic of discussion is race, class, gender, and sexuality. While these subjects would normally be considered individually, Weber essentially points out what all of these things have in common, thus it falls under one topic. Race, class, gender, and sexuality are all defined by a time and commonly shared perspective by the “dominant” race, social class, gender, sexuality, or what have you. Specifically, Weber states five ways to define these terms. The terms cannot be defined unless in context, because the definitions have changed over time. Keep in mind; in the 1970’s it was taboo for a relationship to exist between two people of the same sex or different race. Nowadays, they’re tolerated at the very least. The terms race, class, gender, and sexuality are also socially constructed, meaning that the dominant group assigns value to the different definitions of race, class, gender, and sexuality. For example, in the United States in the 1950’s, it was common for middle class white Americans to be considered “good”, whereas non-white Americans living in poverty were to be considered “bad” or even “dangerous”. Moreover, they are defined by power relationships wherein the dominant culture exerts power over the minority cultures through defining a specific race, class, gender, or sexuality and thus excluding from the society’s resources or something of this sort. Weber also explores the relationship between the social makeup of race, class, gender, and sexuality and then the effect that has on the individual. For example, in the United States in the 1970s, the middle class was almost exclusively made up of white heterosexual families and the upper class even more so. Today, the middle and upper classes are available to any race or sexuality. Because the middle and upper classes are more diverse, there is less value given to terms
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