Since the start of time, there has been individuals in society that have been discriminated against based on their religion, culture, race, and sexual orientation. The article “How Did Jews Become White Folks?” by Karen B. Brodkin highlighted the struggles that European immigrants, Jews, and African American faced in the United States pre and post World War two. Brodkin focused in on the idea of “whiteness” in America, and how the word has evolved overtime to include a variety of ethnicities.
Working Towards Whiteness is about immigrants who are coming to the United States during the twentieth century and struggling to become white. This is because America has this identity of being white and the new immigrants are facing the problem of fitting in based on their race and class. The states have applied restriction so that they can preserve the population to be more white. In Roediger historical studies he brings these practices to light and his goals to draw attention to the biased white supremacist policy of the government in the regulations of immigration. Roediger most evident strength would be that he has the adaptation of the “in-between” status of the new immigrants coming in, which they are neither accepted as white neither can they be able to identify themselves as their pre-existing background.
In The White Scourge, Neil Foley gives detailed facts about the construction and reconstruction of whiteness and the connection of this whiteness to power, mainly on cotton culture in central Texas. Foley 's book analyzes “whiteness” through detailed analysis of race, class, and gender. What was most intriguing about this book is its comparison of whiteness on various racial groups and classes, for and how each struggled in comparison to the other in order to thrive and exist with one another. In this book, Foley shows a racial system that continues to produce both poverty material wise and poverty of where you stand racially. It is also very interesting that the system exploits not only Mexicans and Blacks, but also the poor whites who competed with them for work.
Whiteness is an integrative ideology that has transpired in North America throughout the late 20th century to contemporary society. It is a social construction that sustains itself as a dogma to social class and vindicates discrimination against non-whites. The power of whiteness is illustrated in social, cultural and political practices. These measures are recognized as the intent standard in which other cultures are persuaded to live by. Bell hooks discusses the evolution of whiteness in an innovative article in which she theorizes this conviction as normative, a structural advantage, an inclusive standpoint, and an unmarked name by those who are manipulating this interdisciplinary. Most intellects, including hooks, would argue that whiteness is a continuation of history; a dominant cultural location that has been unconsciously disclosing its normativity of cultural practice, advocating fear, destruction, and terror for those who are being affected by this designation.
Alice McIntyre talks about how whites view racism in many different examples and stories of white talk. McIntyre defines white talk throughout the reading, “Talk that serves to insulate white people from examining their/our individual and collective roles in the perpetuation of racism. It is a result of whites talking uncritically with/to other whites all the while, resisting critique and massaging each other’s racist attitude, beliefs, and actions” (McIntyre, 45-46). McIntyre talks about the themes that were discussions of white talk: “(1) How the participants constructed differences from “the Other,” (2) how they reconstructed myths about white and people of color, and (3) how they privileged their own feelings and affect over the lived
In Peggy McIntosh’s article, “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack,” McIntosh embarked to uncover the countless advantages whites tend to have over those of color. By doing so, she validated her credibility to the reader by listing her findings along with research and evidence to supplement her claim. After reflecting on the privileges she found, McIntosh stated, “…whiteness protected me from many kinds of hostility, distress, and violence, which I was being subtly trained to visit in turn upon people of color” (McIntosh, 3). This makes it obvious to the reader that McIntosh’s findings are unjust and should be changed. Unfortunately, most white individuals are currently doing nothing to modify these unfair privileges. McIntosh concludes the article by posing
Since the beginning of time, individuals have been discriminated against based on their religion, culture, race, and sexual orientation. The article “How Did Jews Become White Folks?” by Karen B. Brodkin highlighted the struggles that European immigrants, Jews, and African Americans faced in the United States pre and post World War II. In her article Brodkin focused on the idea of “whiteness” in America, and how the word has evolved over time to include a variety of ethnicities.
In his book, he notes “that white supremacy was so foundational to this country that it would not be defeated in my lifetime, my child’s lifetime, or perhaps ever” (Coates, We Were Eight Years in Power 159). Mr Coates argues that the United Staes is a country in which white supremacy is an unconquerable force that will continue to exists, and black Americans will have to perpetually deal with it. His account paints a very dark and bleak imagery of the U.S.; he describes an American in which minorities have limited access to the American dream because of the color of their skin. In a very famous line, he writes “I had thought that I must mirror the outside world, create a carbon copy of white claims to civilization. It was beginning to occur to me to question the logic of the claim itself ” (Coates, Between the World and Me 50). As young man, Coates believes he naively believed in the American dream, a product he as now come to view as “white claims to civilization” and only until he matured did he understand how the dream was unobtainable in full, by blacks.
Joseph Healey’s “From Immigrants to White Ethnics” is a generalized comparison between the varying groups of individuals that accompanied the colossal waves of immigration to the United States from Europe in the nineteenth century. Immigration to this country resulted from a number of reason such as religious persecution, individuals seeking to find employment after industrialization in their home countries limited their livelihood, and political oppositions to name a few. On arrival the immigrants knew immediately they were of the subordinate group and faced “discrimination and prejudice” (Healey, 2012, p. 54), although some more so than others. Among the first immigrants to arrive in the United States were Northern and Western European citizens. Unlike the immigrants from Ireland and Southern and Eastern Europe that chose the United States for their new homeland these individuals were probably the most accepted by the majority, even if considered just nominally superior to the others. Included in this group were the “English, Germans, Norwegians, Swedes, Welsh, French, Dutch and Danes” (Healey, 2012, p. 56). This acceptance was due in part to the similarities that the dominate group held as ideals such as their religion, along with cultural values and characteristics. If the Northern and Western Europeans found acceptance difficult, individuals from Ireland and the Europeans from the south and east had an even more traumatic experience. Whereas the more accepted group had
In this spellbinding lecture, the author of White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son offers a unique, inside-out view of race and racism in America. Expertly overcoming the defensiveness that often surrounds these issues, Wise provides a non-confrontational explanation of white privilege and the damage it does not only to people of color, but to white people as well. This is an invaluable classroom resource: an ideal introduction to the social construction of racial identities, and a critical new tool for exploring the often invoked – but seldom explained – concept of white privilege.
As we begin reading The Limits of Whiteness, Maghboulegh introduces us to the court case Pourghoraishi vs Flying J Inc where Pourghoraishi, an Iranian American, is discriminated against by the white manager of Flying J and a white police officer. These men, who live in a post 9/11 world, classify Pourghoraishi as “Persian” and relate his appearance to a terrorist.
Lipsitz argues that in the post-World War II era, a combination of public policy and private prejudice has encouraged white people to “invest” in whiteness as an ongoing force of economic mobility and social differentiation. Lipsitz claims that such “possessive investment in whiteness” has not merely sustained racialized hierarchies but encouraged collective
Long after the war for independence had been fought, such literature continued to function as the means by which racial ideologies were reflected, reinforced and reconstructed. Takaki's survey of nineteenth-century white prejudice towards those both native and foreign to America reveals how national identity ultimately emerged out of a national literature.
In Working Toward Whiteness: How America’s Immigrants Became White, David Roediger talked about the messy process of immigrants becoming white. Race is constructed through a messy process where immigrants were shown what it meant to be racist, how to acquire the title of whiteness. Race relation, housing, and state policies ultimately gave immigrants a white identity.
Although some individuals may wish or even naively claim that we live in a post-racial society, the reality in twenty first century America is that individual and institutional racism continues to take a horrible toll on young people of color, who are at greater risk of race-based violence, unjust criminalization, as well as economic, political and educational discrimination. The powerful advantages that come from being born white are immeasurable and painfully real. It is critical that white individuals recognize the depth of their privilege, but doing nothing more than that can appear self-congratulatory, and as an attempt to exempt them from responsibility. An example of one writer’s over-simplification of white privilege can be found