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Ethnicity and Old AgeExpanding Our Imagination$
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Sandra Torres

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781447328117

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447328117.001.0001

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Ethnicity and race: from essentialism to constructionism

Ethnicity and race: from essentialism to constructionism

Chapter:
(p.51) Three Ethnicity and race: from essentialism to constructionism
Source:
Ethnicity and Old Age
Author(s):

Sandra Torres

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781447328117.003.0003

This chapter presents the ways in which understandings of ethnicity and race have evolved, and what characterises the different perspectives on these social positions that are available (i.e. essentialism/ primordialism, structuralism/ circumstantialism and constructionism). In doing so, this chapter maps out what these different perspectives mean to how we make sense of the impact that ethnicity and race have in our lives, and explains why some scholars refer to ethnicity and race as background variables, while others regard them as social positions, locations or identification grounds. In doing so this chapter problematizes what previous research on the intersection of ethnicity/ race and ageing/ old age has shown as far as the understandings of ethnicity and race that inform this scholarship.

Keywords:   Ethnicity, Race, Racialization, Essentialism, Primordialism, Structuralism, Circumstantialism, Constructionism, Social positions, Identification grounds

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