Addressing Group Interest

Michael O. Emerson and George Yancey

in Transcending Racial Barriers

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780199742684
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199943388 | DOI:
Addressing Group Interest

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Marriage counselors attempt to help couples overcome their problems by getting each spouse to see the other's perspective—putting themselves in the other's shoes, listen to their spouse, and take positive steps to change the situation. Racial groups are in a marriage, too. Their marriage is the shared society. Like the people that comprise them, racial groups are selfish. We call it “group interest.” To move forward, the racial groups need “marriage” counseling. Listening to those of other racial groups is merely a start. This chapter examines how the failure of whites and people of color to consider the interest of other racial groups has led to the solutions of majority- and minority-group obligations. It discusses research concerning multiracial families, integrated congregations, and the military. Doing so provides insight into the processes and rewards of developing an other-oriented racial perspective. A key reward is the development of interracial relationships that allow for honest interracial communication. This chapter first considers ethnocentrism and group interest and then proceeds to provide majority- and minority-group examples of ethnocentrism.

Keywords: racial groups; group interest; ethnocentrism; interracial communication; multiracial families; integrated congregations; military; obligations

Chapter.  5004 words. 

Subjects: Race and Ethnicity

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