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Extra info for Breaking Bad Habits of Race and Gender: Transforming Identity in Schools
A conception of race held by many early modern Western scientists (and still today by some people) was that races are immutable and determined human differences. Often, external physical variations were thought to be indicative of innate, fixed differences. Race was— and frequently still is—a classification system based on physical characteristics of the body that can be used to describe and make predictions about 31 32 Chapter Three human groups. Advances in biology and anthropology over the past few decades have produced evidence that this view is not valid.
These farmers realized that setting up a graduated distinction within a subordinate racial group jeopardized the completeness of their dominance, and therefore they curtailed the practice. Perhaps sensing the pressing need within public domains to identify racial characteristics that could genuinely distinguish different races (because of the need of whites to secure and maintain superiority within the political and economic realms), Johann Blumenbach, George-Louis Leclerc de Buffon, and other leading scientists working in the mid- to late 1700s sought to definitively determine which characteristics denoted racial separation.
Good habits promote smooth and just transactions with other people and the world at large. Bad Habits While habit provides a platform for transaction with the world and implements thought, habits can become problematic. ”28 We become stuck in a rut when we continue to behave in a certain way again and again even though that behavior is not working for us, insofar as it inhibits our growth, blocks fruitful exchanges with others, or does not help us navigate the world. When we fall prey to the comfort and ease of repeating habits that once served us well, even habits that were once good may become bad.