Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Race, Class and Ethics: Research on Racial disparity

Is Cannabis Responsible for Mass Incarceration

  • A common misperception of the mass incarceration argument is that mass incarceration is solely fueled by marijuana. The argument of mass incarceration is that minorities are unequally represented within the American justice system through multiple vestiges, marijuana and other drug charges perhaps being some of the first and widely known, but certainly not the only. 
  • Other mediums include the war on drugs and specifically targeting communities of color
  • Another thing to keep in mind is the U.S has a population of about 325,000 million people, Black people comprising only 13% which comes out to be around 42,000,000 people. Even though drug offenses take up a small portion of charges within the justice system, the people charged are majority black. This disparity has a much larger impact on the small percentage of Black people than on white people who comprise 76% of the population. 
  • The box in the upper middle references statistics on the justice system and racial disparity that explains the reality of mass incarceration regardless of the medium. 

Sociology and race

Sociology is also another great way to research race. Race and Ethnicity became a key research topic in Sociology.  Some topics and sociologists to research are:

  • W.E.B Du Bois- focused on integration, acculturation, and assimilation. 
  • W.E.B Du Bois- " Double Conciousness" in The Souls of Black Folks 
  • The Racial Formation Theory - by Howard Winant and Michael Omi 
  • The Theory of Systemic Racism by Joe Feagin
  • Whiteness
  • White Privilege 
  • Contemporary Segregation
  • The formation of racial identity 

Understanding Mass Incarceration

Philosophy Research Topics on Race

Philosophy is a great way to research racial disparity and understand race. In your search through databases include phrases such as:

  • The Critical Race Theory 
  • White Shame 
  • Blackness
  • Philosophy of race 

Criminalization of Marijuana

It is important to relate the research found to what we have learned in class, compare the treatment and criminalization of marijuana to legal drugs and addictive substances, this may reveal that the criminalization of marijuana was not a health care preventative measure but a weapon. 

Joe Feagin Racist America: Roots, Current Realities, and Future Reparations

Research on Marijuana Effects

The research on the effects of marijuana is largely mixed, there is both positive and negative research on the the effects. The most negative effects are usually associated with long term, heavy use in addition to negative methods of consuming the drug. The library is a great resource. It's important to take the time to use resources like the library and search engines like Google Scholar, that can give peer-reviewed journals and research. Below are some results for both the positive, negative and mixed: