The roots of racism are imbedded deep within the life history of the individual as well as the history of mankind. The term psychodynamics refers to the systematized knowledge and theory of human behavior and its motivations. Psychodynamics contends that a person’s total makeup and probable reaction at any given moment are the product of past interaction between his specific genetic endowment and the environment, both animate and inanimate, in which he has been living from the time of his conception.
A child is born as free of racial prejudice as of political preference. The significant activities and needs of a human being are not determined by the amount of melanin in his skin. While the black man’s and white man’s experience in this society differs, the principle of physiological and psychological functions is the same. As William H. Grier and Price M. Cobb write,
There is nothing reported in the literature or in the experience of any clinician known to the authors that suggests that black people function differently psychologically from anyone else. Black man’s mental functioning is governed by the same rules as that of any other group of men. Psychological principles understood first in the study of white men are true no matter what the man’s color [Black Rage, 1968, p. 129].
To understand the behavior pattern of racism we must dig below the surface. The influence of early thought patterns of the child stains his life-long perspective of his fellow human being in ways of which he may not be conscious. Many white Bible-believing, evangelical Christians find it impossible to accept a black man into fellowship with them. Why?
We shall first examine how the emotional effects, attitudes, and concepts of color lead to racial ...1
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