The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander tries to advance intellectual dialogue regarding mass incarceration in the United States. Alexander does this by carrying out a historical analysis of the process in which the correctional system controls African Americans through intentionally selected, and systematically sanctioned legal limits. In fact, the United States incarceration rate is not at peak by coincidence. Moreover, it is not coincidental that Black men and women make up the majority of this number. According to Alexander, this problem is a consequence of the “New Jim Crow” rules, which use racial stratification to eliminate black individuals in the legal sense. Black people and a small number of the Hispanic community face racial stratified laws when they face the justice system. This paper will support the claims that race is a major factor in the incarceration of black men in the United States, which includes the Jim Crow system, the slave system and the drag war. This process will also involve analyzing of some of the arguments presented within the book.
Wise’s examination of the inconspicuous character of racism 2.0 dovetails fittingly with our course’s recurring theme of institutionalized racism. In class lectures we have defined institutionalized racism as the discriminatory practices that have become regularized and routinized by state agencies, organizations, industries, or anywhere else in society. Although such practices might not be intentionally racist, they end up being racist nevertheless as consequence of the systematized and unspoken biases that have become increasingly convoluted and entrenched within society over time. It also doesn’t help white people to recognize these discriminatory practices considering they have been unconsciously tailored to be consistent with white perspective and mentality. In her article, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack, Peggy McIntosh examines not only how white folks often consider themselves to be a normative figure within society, but also how they are carefully taught not to recognize the advantages they gain from the disadvantages that impair people of color. In the article, McIntosh acknowledges the reality of her own white privilege and expresses, “In my class and place, I did not see myself as a racist because I was taught to recognize racism only in individual acts of meanness by members of my group, never in invisible systems conferring unsought racial dominance on my group from birth” (McIntosh 4). In fact, even if white folks do not believe themselves to
The diversity between Americans has always been evident, and not just by the skin tone or religion, but also by their backgrounds, as well as how their lives are like today. Especially in African Americans and those who wanted to change the ways of religion, and the prejudice against them continues to stick, even today.
Sitting on the porch with her sisters, hooks saw that “next to the white drivers in the front would be the dog and in the back seat the black worker.” This subtle image taught hooks the “interconnectedness of race and class,” and a demeaning message that white people placed animals ahead of African-Americans. Taking the high road, hooks attempted to spark conversation with her white neighbors; however, she was turned down and ridiculed. While trying to be friendly, hooks was told that “they came to this side of town to be rid of lazy blacks.” Time and time again racial and sexist tensions worked against Hooks, but instead of letting injustice get the best of her she made her porch a place of “antiracist resistance.” Hooks’ porch was an oasis in the male/white desert that dried up her life. On hooks’ porch she could experience the peace and joy she had as a child sitting on her porch with her sisters before her father came home. Hooks could have talked back to the white people that mocked her, but instead she chose the high road and conquered race with peace.
During the Civil Rights Era, many black power movements strived to prevent the New Jim Crow from happening. The black man was being oppressed during segregation and treated like animals. The white supremacy, only visualize African Americans as slaves, people who should not be a part of the United States. Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X drove men and women to fight for his or her rights. However, that was not enough to stop the white supremacy from oppressing African Americans. The Civil Rights movement did put an end to public segregation. It did not put not put an end to the laws being made by the government, which is dominated by the white race. In the book, The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander discussed how the Civil Rights and black power movements helped African Americans gain their equal rights, but did not help to gain political power. Mass Incarceration is where the African Americans’ lives end because of the social structure created by the government. Blacks are mostly in the lower class because after the Great Depression, Roosevelt only created laws for whites. This allowed the white community to build and move out the cities into better neighborhoods. Leaving the black community behind. The government placed businesses and built big buildings to keep all the blacks in one place. Base on how the black community was viewed as a race and social status, gives this race a higher chance of being behind bars.
Before using her Facebook as a means to connect young minds about civil rights movements and issues that still plagues the nation today, Sandra Bland used her social media like every other citizen. That is until just after Christmas of 2014 when she made the decision to speak up about “the economic crisis burdening young African Americans,” trying to, in her words, inform her readers about black history, or American history as she liked to describe it (Nathan). Sandra Bland, a 28 year old African American, had just received a job interview from her alma mater, Prairie View A&M University. Her life seemed to be going smoothly, just received a job offering, rekindled her relationship with her mother, and seemed optimistic about the future to
The article “The Great White Way” by Debra J. Dickerson attempts to show her readers that “Race is an arbitrary system for establishing hierarchy and privilege” (68) in America. In her article, Dickerson questions how “whiteness” leads America in our culture and society and how all the other races are defined in America. She also explains how history has divided whites from non-whites in America. The intended audience that Dickerson’s essay gravitated towards are political or liberal Americans. In her article “The Great White Way”. Debra J. Dickerson powerfully argues that race is an overall way to establish social classes and who and what get special privileges because of their certain race or skin color. Dickerson argues that “Race is
bell hooks, renowned black feminist and cultural critic criticizes the lack of racial awareness in her essay, Representing Whiteness in the Black Imagination (1992). ‘bell hooks’ is written in lower case to convey that the substance of her work reigns more important than the writer. From a marginalized perspective, hooks argues that sites of dominance, not otherness is problematic and critiques the lack of attention that white scholars pay to the representation of whiteness in the black imagination. Critical feminist scholars Peggy McIntosh and Ruth Frankenberg identify their own whiteness as a dominant discourse, but share a critical departure from hooks with the notion of whiteness as terror. hooks aim is not to reverse racism, but discuss her position to authentically inform readers about how she experiences racism. Furthermore, systems of oppression are manufactured by human thought and thus the site of the Other is always produced as a site of difference. Gender, race, sex, class, disability, and geography are situated differently in social structure, but dominant groups assume they share the same reality though they cannot experience it. In consequence, the Other cannot hold a singularized identity of their own and the binary structure succeeds in containing racialized bodies in place. What happens to those bodies when they cross boundaries of the binary? hooks recounts being routinely disciplined back into place when crossing the border; however, dominant white
White privilege is the societal privileges that specifically benefit white people. White privilege is why white people can get pulled over by the police and escape a ticket with just a smile and apology. White privilege is also why whites are in charge of a company and they see a black person, they bypass the application. Whites carry a certain privilege not available to people of color. Marilyn Frye describes how whiteness is a form social and political power.
A major issue in today’s age is the idea of “White America”. Ta-Nehisi Coates brings forth the ideas of white America often throughout his book, Between the World and Me, as well as the struggles he has as a black American. For many years, people have been pushed or pulled to America in hopes of finding the American dream everyone talks about. The dream of coming to America and exploring the new frontier. Eventually, to become wealthy and become an upper class citizen are all factors of achieving the dream. Although, little do they know that the dream is not obtainable by everyone. Coates asserts the American dream revolves around being white. Often times, blacks will begin to “act white” in order to achieve this American dream or achieve
Racism in America silently remains as a pre-eminent reality, even though white America denies the facts. Many white people restrain the importance of race in our society, but like to maintain the power under the false myth of the melting pot. In the short story “Theories and Constructs of Race,” of Rereading America, the authors mention how race is made up socially, culturally, politically, and economically, but many have been forced to change, because of
In the book, Up from slavery, Booker T. Washington, the former slave who wrote the book on his experiences, spent the majority of his life in the “after emancipation” era. He was a slave only up to the 10th year of his life, and he did not experience the many beatings that many of the older slaves had. He enjoyed learning, and he “fought” his way into college to do so. He had a family, and he was able to live with his mother and siblings, but he never knew his father, who was said to be a white man. When he was freed from slavery, he still experienced the scorn and hardships of the “separate but equal” mind set of those around him.
Slavery in Anglo-America, the British West Indies and the United States, endured for hundreds of years. However, as time progressed, economic, and social realities gradually decreased the feasibility of the institution. Examining Michael Craton’s book, Testing the Chains, and other resources, we are able to see that although outright rebellion and violence were sometimes used by slaves, religion, politics, and anti-slavery propaganda, also worked to slacken the chains, leading to complete emancipation. While it would be perverse to say that the slaves freed themselves without help, as there is no doubt that whites played a large role, it is true that the perseverance of the black spirit ultimately resulted in freedom. Therefore, it can be concluded that it is through unrelenting counter-hegemony that the slaves freed themselves.
Frankenberg (1993) describes Whiteness as multidimensional: “First, whiteness is a location of structural advantage, of race privilege. Second, it is a ‘standpoint’ and place from which white people look at ourselves, at others, and at society. Third, ‘whiteness’ refers to a set of cultural practices that are usually unmarked and unnamed”(p. 1). Although Whiteness has intangible systems of oppression, inequality, and unearned advantage that are not necessary seen, heard, or felt; nonetheless, they reproduce and support the idea of White as the ultimate form of racial identity.
In this paper I will be discussing my reflection of whiteness in society. First I will need to explain what whiteness is in order for one to understand what it is I’m writing about. Whiteness is one of the principles of the construction of racism. It consists of the White racial group of people, their culture, human rights, and compensations that are provided to the white race. Being white is described as being a member of the domineering cluster of people. It creates images of “White pride” and “White power” which encourages deliberate acts of racism. Whiteness is forcefully embraced and defended. “Whiteness is nothing but an expression of race privilege.” (Schaefer, 2010).