13 April 2017

Anthropology against white​ supremacy

In this post from the AAA's Anthropology NewsLuzilda Carrillo Arciniega offers "Six Ways Anthropologists Can Challenge White Supremacy" (27 March 2017).

  1. Create purposeful students
  2. Critique identity politics
  3. Create brave spaces
  4. Break the Silence
  5. Push back against hierarchies
  6. Remain politically engaged

While many of us as anthropologists consistently strive to be critical of identity politics, power inequalities and structures, I think it is really valuable to consider here the banal (but powerful!) work we already do addressed in points 3 and 4 -- as Jennifer wrote about earlier this week.

One of the things that anthropologists are known for is asking those "dumb" questions about things that are otherwise taken-for-granted and common sense and allowing ourselves to feel uncomfortable as we learn in new cultural moments and contexts. In our classrooms and beyond, it is important for us to make this space not only for ourselves, but for our students and interlocutors as Carillo argues: "Critical dialogue cannot occur unless individuals are open to being vulnerable. Creating a safe space should not be conflated with comfort, convenience, or personal satisfaction."

Quick links and further reading: