Racialization and racism

Learning goals

What is racialization, and what impact does it have in terms of racism, discrimination, marginalization and social exclusion? In this capsule, we will learn to identify the processes of Otherness that are founded upon ‘racial’ categories, and familiarize ourselves with their impact on the lives of racialized and minority populations.

With the collaboration of:


  • Gain knowledge of Otherness and racialization, their forms, and their social and individual consequences in terms of racism, discrimination and social exclusion.
  • Gain knowledge of the historical origins of racism and its contemporary configurations.


  • Analyze how Otherness and racialization are constructed, and how they and their impacts on individuals and groups change over time.
  • Apply an intersectional outlook in the analysis of these processes.


  • Develop an interest in and a critical perspective regarding the social construction of racial categories and of the Other.
  • Encourage commitment to fighting for equality, and against racism and discrimination.

Race vs. racialization and racism

In scientific terms, “race” as a biological or genetic category has no basis whatsoever. Nevertheless, the racial classification of the world’s populations — and their resulting hierarchization and dehumanization — has served for centuries as a justification for colonization, slavery, extermination, violence, and human and material exploitation. It continues to be used today to classify, prioritize, dehumanize, dominate, exploit, encourage material and symbolic violence, segregate socially and geographically, and cause fear.