The wide world of hate
Some years before, I'd noted with interest the suspicion and occasional derision Swedish police officers directed toward an ethnic Finnish colleague in one of Helene Tursten's books. Finns, in turn, are less than generous and fair toward their own country's Sami indigenous population in another crime novel whose title escapes me at the moment.
Finally, I recently met a Canadian who had had extensive professional dealings in China and with its population. "Don't ask the Chinese what they think of black people," he said, shaking his head ruefully.
We in America, where "people of color" is a blanket term, tend to think of racism as, by definition, directed by white people of European descent toward peoples with complexions different from theirs, generally darker. I find it a bracing reminder of the complexity and diversity of humanity to be reminded that ethnic suspicion and resentment are more widespread than that. Knowledge is good.
What about you, generous and inquiring readers? What surprising examples of ethnic suspicion and prejudice have you found in your fiction reading?
© Peter Rozovsky 2012