It is through a sociological study that we identify the problems and helps to understand the magnitude of racial conflicts in a society and in this way create and develop programs that promote personal and collective development, equality, multiculturalism, respect for beliefs and religions of each person, to non-discrimination by race, ethnicity, etc.
We can look into issues of race and ethnicity through three major sociological perspectives: functionalism, conflict theory, and symbolic interactionism.
In this theoretical perspective, racial and ethnic inequalities must have served an important function in order to exist as long as they have. E.g. slave owners justified slavery in the antebellum South, by suggesting black people were fundamentally inferior to white and preferred slavery to freedom.
2. Conflict Theory
This theory examines the numerous past and current struggles between the white ruling class and racial and ethnic minorities, identifying specific conflicts that have arisen when the dominant group perceived a threat from the minority group. For example, after world war II, when many black American came back, the white americans feared they would take over their jobs. On the other hand the blacks felt alienated and left out of political decisions and work even after they fought for the country.
3. Symbolic interactionism
This sociological perspective suggests that, race and ethnicity provide strong symbols as sources of identity. It is the symbol of race that lead to racism. For example, reknowed interactionists project that without these interactions, individuals in the dominant group would not hold racist views