Unpacking Race • Part 4:
White Privilege and Internalized Racism

Part 1 • Part 2 • Part 3  Part 4 • Part 5

In our fourth session of the Unpacking Race workshop series, we go deeper into concepts of white privilege, internalized racism, collusion, micro-aggression, and also strategies of empowerment, examining how all of these things crop up in our own lives.

Readings

This week we've assigned the following essays.  Click on the titles to view:
  1. Crazy Sometimes” by Leonard Pitts Jr. 
  2. Making Systems of Privilege Visible” by Stephanie M. Wildman with Adrienne D. Davis.
  3. White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” by Peggy McIntosh (video version below).
  4. "Internalized Racism: a Definition" by Donna Bivens.   
Videos

Here's an excerpt from A Question of Color, Kathe Sandler's film on internalized racism among African-Americans:

And a video version of "Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack," Peggy McIntosh's anecdotal essay on white privilege:

Caucus Groups:

In the workshop we broke up into caucus groups for the purpose of discussing our different experiences.  The People of Color Caucus Group discussed the following questions:
  1. What thoughts or feelings do I have about meeting in caucus groups?
  2. How have I been affected by internalized racism and horizontal racism? How do I collude with the system of racism?
  3. How can I empower myself and others in the group to deal with racism in our lives, and to take action to end racism?
  4. What are the costs and benefits of actively confronting racism, and doing anti-racism work?
The White People Caucus Group discussed the following questions:us
  1. What thoughts or feelings do I have about meeting in caucus groups?
  2. How have I benefited from white privilege?
  3. How can I move from feelings of guilt and shame about racism to taking responsibility for my role as an agent of racism?
  4. What are the costs and benefits of becoming an ally to people of color and doing anti-racist work? 
After meeting in these caucus groups, the entire group reunited and reported back on what they'd discussed.



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