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Understand – calmly – the history of racialization processes

"The History Lessons Forum welcomed the intervention of Professor J.-F. Schaub, professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris)"

Last April 19 we celebrated in Fide, within the framework of the History Lessons Forum: Men, facts and stories; the session on Understand-calmly-the history of racialization processes

The History Lessons Forum welcomed the intervention of Professor J.-F. Schaub, professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris). His approach had an interesting pedagogical profile, in the sense of trying to make the young generations understand a phenomenon in which Europe itself was immersed practically from its very beginnings as an organized society. He pointed out how human judgment works and acts based on what it perceives by sight, and that, consequently, it finds in the difference a first criterion for categorizing the other. In his opinion, however, it would only be possible to speak of racism as an operational historical concept at the moment in which the characters -of all kinds- that derive from physical appearance are considered hereditary, typical of a «race». It should not be surprising, then, that societies such as the European ones, historically articulated according to differential principles (mainly: noble and non-noble) would have welcomed other binary forms of opposition, forms that over time acquired a trinitarian profile that the dessert ended up prevailing, especially in Iberian societies. Along with the noble (of "race") and the non-noble, the "ennobled" appeared; to the free and to the slave the manumitted was united; the legitimate son was attached to the legitimate son and the bastard; etc. Each and every one of these combinations implies the presumption of a "stain" that is perpetuated, and that only with the advent of liberal thought allowed Europe to get rid of such prejudice.

Recommended reading:

SCHAUB, JF and SEBASTIANI, S. (2021) Race and history in Western societies (XV-XVIIIe siècle)

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