Us and Them: Why Do We Hate Other Races?

In this article, we will talk about why we hate other races. It happens due to the process of evolution and human nature.

The Issue of Races on the Scientific Level: Race and Hate

Human is a socialized creature; it is vital for us to communicate with other people. However, due to the cultural and historical differences, we constantly divide society into two main groups – Us and Them. We, of course, are better, faster and stronger than They are. They are enemies whom we hate, and often this division is based on the race. This feeling arises not because we are bad people, it is in our nature. Let us figure out some scientific data about why we hate other races with a help of Click here. You can write an excellent paper on this topic because people often do not think much about reflex processes So, you have an opportunity to amaze your professor!

Faces of Hatred

First of all, in the introduction of your essay, you need to describe the reflex that strangers cause in our mind. Different types of Them cause different feelings and different neurobiological reactions. Most often we view strangers as threatening, aggressive, and unreliable. In economic games, people treat people of another race as less reliable. White people tend to believe that African Americans are more malevolent than white people.

Sometimes we feel disgusted towards strangers. This emotion is caused by the insula – the area of ​​the brain that protects animals from poisonous food. In the case of mammals, it reacts to the taste or smell of something rotten and causes irritation of the stomach and nausea. In the case of humans, it reacts not only to the smell or taste but also to a story about something disgusting, terrible pictures or video records. Therefore, the expression “I am sick of this person” is not exactly a metaphor. An aversion to the abstract beliefs of another group is too difficult for insula, but it annoys various markers: nasty food, rancid flavors, unappropriated clothes. According to psychologist Paul Rosin from the University of Pennsylvania, disgust serves as a marker of an ethnic group.

Often this is done by weaker groups to reduce the burden of submission and obedience. We also tend to regard them as more primitive people with simpler emotions and less sensitivity to pain. For example, in ancient Rome, in medieval England, in Imperial China, or in the pre-war American South, the elite considered slaves to be weak fools, incapable of independence.

Color of Skin Vs Shirt Color

Why is there such a cautious attitude towards other races? First, the race is a biological attribute, a noticeable fixed identity. Moreover, people were evolved in conditions where differences in skin color indicated that the person is a stranger, perhaps hostile.

To correctly write an essay, you need to remember there are no biological reasons to hate other races. Races appeared in the history of hominids recently. The genetic variations within the race are varied the same as between the races: compare the Sicilians and the Swedes. The classification system of races is also confusing. At different times, there were Mexican and Armenian, southern European and northern European races. The race is a cultural but not a biological construct.

Therefore, it is not surprising that the racial We and They are often replaced by other classifications. In one study, people had to listen to a list of statements combined with photographs of representatives of different races and then tried to remember which phrases refer to each of the pictures. If people forgot something, they tried to classify statements on the races.

Practical Experiments

Of course, you need to provide your essay with persuasive arguments and give an examples. For instance, you may describe such an experiment. Mary Wheeler, studying the reaction of the amygdala to another race, showed how the categories of “my people” and “strangers” change. When the participants are instructed to find a distinctive thing in each picture, the faces of another race do not activate the amygdala. One of the groups of the study was assessing whether the person would have liked this or that vegetable in the photo. In this case, the amygdala did not react to the faces of other races.

Why is it happening? You look at pictures and think about what they would like for dinner. The best scenario: you decide that you and he/she share some preferences in vegetables and then you feel some sympathy. In the worst case, you will understand that you are different but according to some innocuous criteria. You think of a human on the picture as of a person, and this weakens the categorization of They / We.

How to End the Dissension?

You may devote your essay to the topic of finding the solution to the “hate race” issue. Below we gathered some theories how to stop hate and so you can use them in your paper.


In the 1950s, psychologist Gordon Allport created a “contact theory.” It is necessary to unite the warring groups with a common cause. The hostility will disappear, the similarities will outweigh the differences, and the strangers will become their own group. There is a possibility that the artificial unification of the conflicting parties will only aggravate the situation. Therefore, attempts to make friends from two warring groups must fulfill such conditions: two similar groups work on one certain task in the place, where they cannot feel as at home. However, the result is not always satisfying: they contact each other, but in the end we will have something like the response “I despise them all, but this one is a not such a bad person.”

Associative Series

To reduce the unconscious dislike, there is one trick. Before a person begins to scold their enemies, remind him/her of his favorite celebrity from a foreign society – create a counter-stereotype. Another powerful useful method is the prospect. Imagine yourself in the place of your enemy. What will one experience?

Be Afraid of Essentialism

Convince others that there is nothing permanent: it all depends on the individual characteristics of people. During the scientific experiment, white participants were asked how they treated different races. Half of them was turned to essentialist thinking by saying to them: “Scientists precisely determine the genetic basis of the race.” Another half heard the antonymic statement that scientists have proven that it is not in our genes. The last statement set people against inequality.

Smooth out the Hierarchy

Social differences exacerbate misunderstanding: the rich emphasize their position in society by making a hole between rich and poor even more, while the poor envy the authorities. A cliche “the rich also cry” is the evidence of such a conflict. According to the results of a survey conducted in about 40 regions, the higher the differentiation of incomes is, the wealthier people have this attitude towards the poorer.

To sum up, you need to demonstrate your personal attitude to this question. You can describe your personal experience and show your point of view. It is worth mentioning that we are not born with hate, however, we have prejudices towards strangers and it is natural.


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