Deconstructing (the) Race
deconstruct this image
"This world is white no longer, and it will never be white again." --James Baldwin, "Stranger in the Village"
"The founding absurdity of "race" as a principle of power, differentiation, and classification must now remain persistently,
obstinately, in view." --Paul Gilroy, Against Race, p. 42
"Anti-Racist solidarity is achieved only when basic conditions for self-definition, self-activity, and community organization have been met. . . . It may be defined as the conscious coordination of anti-racist commitment and action across ethnonational and racial boundaries. Put another way, effectiveness in anti-racist mobilization depends on the ability to make allies. What is living and useful about the rather debased construct of multiculturalism, what is politically meaningful about it, can be identified with this concept of solidarity."
--Howard Winant, The World is a Ghetto, p. 284.
White People Behaving Badly at Kara Walker Art Installation on Sugar and Slavery
- How the Asians Did Not Become White
- The White Privilege Debate Goes National with Bill O'Reilly, and Academics Respond (May 2014)
- Terrorism, Veterans and White Supremacy: The Shootings in April 2014
- “Thirty-Nine Questions for White People” artist Naima Lowe: “Who gets to be white hasn’t always been the same”
- "Rent a White Guy"? Atlantic magazine exposes the business of white supremacy in China
- Is "white guilt" really a problem? Not so, argues John Jackson Jr. in the June 9th Chronicle of Higher Education.
- Whiteness still the standard of beauty for women in Brazil, a nation where the majority are people of color.
- Whites yell racial slurs at children's mural, demand skins be lightened.
- Study finds whites still given preference in selecting juries in the South.
- Tim Wise explains how the new Arizona immigration law reinforces the ideology and practice of white supremacy.
- Kelefa Sanneh reviews key new books on Whiteness Studies in the New Yorker. While this is an excellent discussion, the concluding speculation about a new "birth" of the idea of "white" people seems curiously off the mark.
- Frank Rich discusses the Tea Party movement, the Arizona immigration law, and their roots in the backlash of whites against their declining power in America.
- Wisconsin outlaws racist mascots. OK, let's give some credit to the white power structure when it gets something right.
Whiteness in the News!
The project's leader says he was ordered to lighten the skin tone after complaints about the children's ethnicity. But the school's principal says the request was only to fix shading and had nothing to do with political pressure.
The "Go on Green" mural, which covers two walls outside Miller Valley Elementary School, was designed to advertise a campaign for environmentally friendly transportation. It features portraits of four children, with a Hispanic boy as the dominant figure.
R.E. Wall, director of Prescott's Downtown Mural Project, said he and other artists were subjected to slurs from motorists as they worked on the painting at one of the town's most prominent intersections.
"We consistently, for two months, had people shouting racial slander from their cars," Wall said. "We had children painting with us, and here come these yells of (epithet for Blacks) and (epithet for Hispanics).
June 6 Update: Word out of Arizona now is that the mural will not be whitened after all. And the man who started the campaign against the mural, Prescott City Councilman Steve Blair, has been fired from his talk-show job.
sad story repeating the classic "white dolls/black
dolls" preference test. Watch
on the Anderson Cooper show.
A handy index to recent news articles on whiteness and white privilege can be found at Huffington Post.
| Read about Hurricane Katrina
and White Supremacy.....
|Margaret Bourke-White's famous
1937 photo "At the Time of the Louisville Flood" seems
to sadly forecast what we would see in the wake of
Hurricane Katrina. The aftermath of Hurricane Katrina
exposed, again, America's shameful system of racial
oppression. It would be impossible to reference all
the hundreds of articles on this topic, but here's one
excellent example, by Jean Hardesty:
"Why were so many white Americans shocked to see the reality of New Orleans? I believe that, in large part, the message put out by the "New Republicans" - that a colorblind approach to public policy is moral and just - is powerful because so many White people want to hear and believe it, not because it can't be easily refuted. Until those of us who benefit from white privilege have to confront the consequences of that privilege, it is possible for us to believe the white supremacist line that people of color are victims of their own moral failings, not of government and private policies. In order to maintain this myth, it is imperative to keep those consequences out of sight." Read the rest of her article "HURRICANE KATRINA AND STRUCTURAL RACISM: A LETTER TO WHITE PEOPLE"
|Watch a video clip from a TV interview in which Greg Jay discusses white privilege.||Watch a video that captures excerpts from a workshop on deconstructing white privilege in 2006, conducted by Dr. Sandra Jones and Dr. Greg Jay.|
Teaching About Whiteness
Jane Elliott's "Blue-Eyed/Brown-Eyed" Series. Considered by many to be America's foremost diversity educator, Jane Elliott's career began with her controversial "blue-eyed/brown-eyed" exercise, in which school children were divided by eye color to learn first-hand the effects of discrimination. A variety of documentaries and workshop tapes demonstrate the dynamics of white privilege and other forms of bias. Highly recommended for use in classrooms and in provoking discussion in diversity training workshops.
The Color of Fear. The Color of Fear is an insightful, groundbreaking film about the state of race relations in America as seen through the eyes of eight North American men of Asian, European, Latino and African descent. In a series of intelligent, emotional and dramatic confrontations the men reveal the pain and scars that racism has caused them. What emerges is a deeper sense of understanding and trust. This is the dialogue most of us fear, but hope will happen sometime in our lifetime.
What Does It Mean To Be White? Derald Wing Sue, Professor of Psychology and Education, Teachers College, Columbia University, presents a series of interviews with White Folks and People of Color. The variety of reactions are both provocative and powerful as they reveal how unaware and uncomfortable many White folks are in answering the question. Why do many White folks rather not think about their whiteness? Why are they uncomfortable with the question? Why do they deny its importance in affecting their lives? Answering these questions requires "making the invisible visible" by deconstructing white privilege. Dr. Sue defines white privilege and uses examples to indicate how white privilege serves to keep Whites relatively oblivious to how it has the opposite effect on persons of color: harms, intimidates, oppresses and alienates.