06 04 11 - 20:21Humanity still isn't sure of the relationship between language categories and reality:
Universals are general or abstract qualities, characteristics, properties, kinds or relations, such as being male/female, solid/liquid/gas or a certain colour, that can be predicated of individuals or particulars or that individuals or particulars can be regarded as sharing or participating in. For example, Scott, Pat, and Chris have in common the universal quality of being human or humanity.
There are three main positions on the issue: realism, idealism and nominalism (sometimes simply called "anti-realism" with regard to universals)
The realist school claims that universals are real â they exist and are distinct from the particulars that instantiate them. There are various forms of realism. Two major forms are Platonic realism (universalia ante res) and Aristotelian realism (universalia in rebus). Platonic realism is the view that universals are real entities and they exist independent of particulars. Aristotelian realism, on the other hand, is the view that universals are real entities, but their existence is dependent on the particulars that exemplify them. - Pix of Dix
If we're going to talk about race, or any other category, this inherency debate is going to kick us in the nuts. Is race a category of observed traits? I can work with that. Others get hung up on there not being writing on the wall or a single race gene to make it clear to their overeducated peasant brains that race, indeed, is real and not a "social construct" like gender, blood type, eye color, IQ or colon diameter.