deborah: the Library of Congress cataloging numbers for children's literature, technology, and library science (Default)
[personal profile] deborah
So I have long understood the critiques of relying on Peggy McIntosh and Tim Wise for introducing white students to race theory and the concepts of privilege. And (while they are not the same person and should not be painted with the same brush), Tim Wise's current panstlessness on Twitter has reminded me of a question I've been meaning to ask for a while.

While I know that there are plenty of excellent writings by people of color on the concept of privilege, I've never found anything, personally, as good as The Invisible Knapsack for really doing that first, preliminary, kindergarten step of introducing the concepts to white students who are initially resistant to the ideas. Given that pretty much anyone with any privilege on any axis is going to get their back up the first time they learn about the concepts, and white students especially given how overwhelming the racial problems are in this country and how much the dominant narrative wants us to believe in a post-racial society, I really like starting with something gentle, something they find it harder to kneejerk argue with. It's certainly not where I finish, but I have found it to be a useful starting point.

I'm sure there must be other introductory essays which are similarly clear and gentle but also written by POC, but my librarian skills are failing me. Anyone have any good recommendations?

(I know there's Scalzi's difficulty level essay, but that suffers from the exact same problem, and also doesn't actually particularly address my usual audience.)
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