Characteristics of Orientalism

In: Social Issues

Submitted By cshanley78
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Characteristics of Orientalism, Prejudice, and Discrimination
Cultural Diversity
June 10, 2011

Characteristics of Orientalism, Prejudice, and Discrimination
The difference between Muslims and Arabs is ethnicity and religion. Arab defines the ethnic group and Muslim defines the religion practiced by an individual devoted to that particular belief. Arab people do not always practice the Muslim religion and not all Muslims are Arab.
According to research and news reports within the past 2 years, the only policy I found pertained to racial profiling that announced citizens of countries considered terrorist active countries would undergo additional screening at airports (Voice of America, 2010). President Obama has been involved in discussions with Arab and Muslim American groups, but no true progress has occurred to limit or stop the discrimination.
Two characteristics of Orientalism are lumping Arab & Muslim people into the same category with no distinction for the ethnic and religious differences and the general stereotype that Arab and Muslim people are not modern. Orientalism and prejudice contributes to hate crimes against these people because of the misunderstanding of the difference between the distinct differences in the cultures of the ethnic group and the religious beliefs of the ethnic groups. Such a vague definition of people living in the Orient can lead to confusion about the different fanatical religious groups inhabiting land in the Orient.
Individuals can promote tolerance and reduce prejudice in their towns and cities by educating children early in life about the differences in cultures within countries in the Orient. Community events that clearly invite and cater to all ethnic groups can promote the increase in acceptance within a community. Having a festive event to show the positive side of a culture seems to be a great way to…...

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...religious group.” Other differences’ between the two are that they hail from different geographical and ancestral backgrounds, and they arrived to the United States at different times.” One policy change that has occurred in the past few years (post 9/11) is that there is a close surveillance of Muslims charity organizations. Another change is that it has been a decrease in the number of visas being given to people coming from Muslims countries (Voices of America News.com, 2006). Orientalism is defining by our text as the simplistic view of the people and history of the Orient with no recognition of change over time or the diversity within its many cultures (Schaefer, 2006). A couple of characteristics of orientalism are that it is an outdated way of looking at Muslim and Arab people without taking into account changes over the years and how they live currently. Also it is a blanket concept that does not look at all of the different cultures within these groups (Schaefer, 2006, p. 286). Orientalism is an ignorant concept and ignorance often leads to meaningless violence hence this uneducated state of mind can directly relate to hate crimes. The best way to promote tolerance and reduce prejudice is by educating people to whom and what Arabs and Muslims really are. Usually, prejudice is caused by a fear of something. If that fear is taken away, by learning about Arabs and Muslims, then there will be no need for prejudice. Another way to promote tolerance and prejudice in......

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