Monday, October 8, 2012

Racism & Women's Studies (Talking Point 6)

Here are some important quotes that I highlighted from Racism and Women's Studies by Barbara Smith:
"I am sure that many women here are telling themselves they aren't racist because they are capable of being civil to Black women, having been raised by their parents to be anything but.  It's not about merely being polite: 'I'm not racist because I do not snarl and snap at Black people.' It's much more subtle than that.  It's not white women's fault that they have been raised, for the most part, not knowing how to talk to black women, not knowing how to look at us in the eye and laugh with us."
This paragraph really related to me.  Growing up I never considered myself racist, but I lived in a white community and didn't have any connections with black people.  Now-a-days, my step-father is a black man from South Africa, my best friend is Haitian, and my her father is my neurologist.

"A major roadblock for women involved in women's studies to changing their individual racism and challenging it institutionally is the pernicious ideology of professionalism.  That word "professionalism" covers such a multitude of sins.  I always cringe when I hear anyone describe herself as "professional," because what usually follows is an excuse for inaction, an excuse for ethical irresponsibility.  It's a word and concept we don't need, because it is ultimately a way of deviding ourselves from others and escaping from reality.  I think the way to be "successful" is to do work with integrity and work that is good."
I completely agree with the statement above.  Growing up, I was raised that I need to do a good job the first time, otherwise I need to do it over.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your last quote you had to. I think deep down we all in or mind set need to really be able to challenge and view things differently.