One Race, Many Cultures: Mankind

Race is commonly defined as a biological construct. However, in actual fact, race is a social construct, with no biological meaning. It constitutes a shared belief of norms and behavior. In other words, scientifically, there is only one race of mankind--Homo sapiens. Attaching a scientific and biological definition to the idea of mankind cause controversies to arise due to the diversity of races in the world today. Ultimately, tracing our roots back to its first beginning, everybody has descended from the same ancestors. Hence, in other words, biologically, the basic foundation of our gene pool is the same. Then why is it that we, as descendants from a common ancestry, have segregated ourselves to inferior races, superior races, or simply put, some races are better than the rest? This will eventually relate back to the cultural aspect of evolution.

The film ‘Journey of a Man’ traces the path of our Y-chromosome back to its roots. It led us to realize that in actual fact, all mankind has originated from the Sane. We are all future generations of Sane. Yet over the years, evolution took place and by social means, mankind has then become divided among itself, with some races becoming superior to the rest. However, as Boas mentioned in ‘The Shackles of Tradition’, inferior races should not have existed at all. We are the ones who set the norms and behavior, as well as the standards of conduct. We are the descendants, who have chosen to go on our individual trajectory in life, defining norms of superiority in our society, forming ingrained prejudices. This placed against the backdrop of race, as a biological construct becomes a conflicting idea. The most basic of all biological constructs lies in our gene pool. Hence, supposed we have all descended from the Sane, our gene pool is initially the same.
In this race of Mankind, we uphold different culture, amongst them all, the elitist culture of superiority. Culture is a learned behavior, the shared understanding of a society that eventually evolved to become the norms of our society. The sole mechanism that drives the changing culture is us-- Mankind. It is the single race of Mankind that has highlighted the gaping disparities among the different culture. This gives rise to the widespread understanding of a world made up of multiple races,. However to look at it in a different light, this variation in race is simply a figment of our own imagination that has developed from our culture.
The social aspect of race has resulted in the division among Mankind. Cultural understanding of the term ‘race’ has led on the concept of superiority that divides the world. On the other hand, the scientific realm of race unites us as one race, Mankind. Yet nobody has actually placed race in such perspective amidst the common understanding of the terminology is in biological terms.
In reality, Mankind is nought but a single race.

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