Patterns of Social and Ethnic Residential Segregation Among Social Groups & Ethnic Minorities

Residential segregation can be explained as special appearance of social inequality, unequal distribution of social, ethnic, etc. groups. The spatial objective reflection of the complicated system of social relation can interpret the socio-economic structure of the city, and the allocation of different social groups.

Appears in space in segregation curve where higher and lower social classes are much different at social hierarchy. The segregation indicates of the social groups at the very bottom of the social hierarchy were significantly lower than those of the top social group, and the segregation curve has the -shape. Due to the fact rich people live at those pars where and as they want to live, and they can exclude those neighbors from lower social class. So there can be trace the tendency that high social class is concentrated in the part of the city where they have the opportunity to occupy “own” territory and keep others away from it, they can develop their own way of construction, their own house types, schools, services, etc. Rich people have enough power and money to build their own world by the rules they are made.

As the opposition to this, poor/lower status people do not live in the parts where and as they want to live, but they can be segregated in the palaces where they allowed and in the way they permitted.

They do not money and power to exclude others, so they are free to choose among the varieties of living under unfavorable conditions. Low status people are segregated in many and small “pockets” of the city (compared with high status people). The government mechanism for exercising land use policy is zoning. In principle, zoning separates industrial, commercial and residential functions, and controls the form and density of new development. In practice, zoning has been used to separate people by income and ethnicity. When zoning changes proposed in diverse neighborhoods that would spur massive new housing development, they encourage the displacement of low-income working people and people of disadvantage ethnic groups. As neighborhoods improve and property values go up there and also in the surrounding areas, and makes the neighborhood unaffordable to the people who now live there.

The end result is income segregation. This is true only for different social groups with same ethnicity or different ethnicity but not the ones ethic groups that can be consider as disadvantage group such as Afro-Americans (the USA), gypsies (Eastern Europe), and Arabs and Turks (Western Europe). During the socialism regime the ethnical segregation was considered non-existence. The socially unprivileged ethnic groups was considered unquestionably as attribute of the past, the lack of a wish to assimilate on the part of that groups, to their alcoholism, work-shyness, criminal way of life, etc. But this was the illusion, which did not affect the predominance of such inequalities, but rather inhibited their open and responsible discussion.

The parts of the city where disadvantages groups live it is not the small units, but relatively large and homogenous. In such areas hatred and exclusion exist in such places. The tendency can be seen that disadvantages people will concentrate and people from other ethnic groups, if they have opportunity, will move out to other districts or give their children to different school, so they will try to have as less as possible relations with disadvantage group. As a consequence ghetto will grow and grow and will be more homogenous. For example, the living conditions of gypsies are more unfavorable than those of Hungarians with low incomes; most of the gypsies live where poor Hungarians do.

The social composition of the new housing estate, which previously had homogeneous population, became more heterogeneous. Segregation tendencies, as was conclude by Csanádi and Ladányi in 1985, within the new housing estates diverse great attention but primarily due to the differing proportion of housing classes, the new housing estates are themselves differentiated. The lack of housing choices for minorities have meant that the quality of suburbanization that they have achieved is distinctly different than that achieved by more advantage groups. For ethnical minorities the freedom to choose where they wish to live is simply not a reality.

For example, in the USA black suburbanization is characterized by expansion of the urban ghetto population to areas just outside city limits African Americans are the most residentially segregated racial or ethnic group in America Regardless of their socioeconomic status, they are forced to persevere without the same equal housing opportunities as white Americans. Residential ethnical segregation was developed through discriminatory policies and local acts of racism. Federal and local government housing discrimination, private discrimination, and exclusionary zoning practices have resulted in the continuation of intentional discrimination against minorities, many of whom still remain disenfranchised members of society.

The devastating effects of residential ethnical discrimination on the quality of life for minority families and for culture at large represent the importance of initiating policies to integrate residential neighborhoods. Without the efforts of integration, the negative effects of decades of bigoted housing policies will be exacerbated, therefore perpetuating the existence of segregation and racial division.

The residential segregation of different social and ethnical groups can be interpreted as spatial form of structural difference. The influence of housing and urban policies to these socially determined process are made with very limited extend. But they can either strengthen or weaken those processes to some degree. The existents of large ethnical ghettos are just the consequents of the incredibly bad social conditions of disadvantaged minorities. And there should be recognition of the need that it is not the way of like or dislike these minorities but about living together with ethnic minorities, and about how this coexistence can be improved.

Sources:•Patterns of Residential Segregation and the Gypsy Minority in Budapest, János Ladányi •The perpetuation of residential racial segregation in America: historical discrimination, modern forms of exclusion, and inclusionary remedies by MARC SEITLES •Residential Segregation by Tom Angotti