Posts Tagged "Are We Born Racist"

Noticing Race

Posted by on Apr 4, 2011 in Race & Culture | 3 comments

Noticing Race

Of all the essays in the book Are We Born Racist?, about which I’m writing this series of posts, the one I wish everyone would read is child psychologist Allison Briscoe-Smith’s “How to Talk with Kids about Race.” (Here is a shorter version, as it originally appeared in “Greater Good” magazine under the title, “Rubbing Off”). We can engage in all kinds of efforts to unlearn, reprogram, override and free our adult minds from the bias we’ve absorbed, but surely one of the most fruitful and effective applications of the new data about how...

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We Can Change Our Minds II

Posted by on Mar 28, 2011 in Changing White Mind, Race & Culture | Comments Off on We Can Change Our Minds II

We Can Change Our Minds II

Are We Born Racist? (see intro post) offers further insights into how we can affect the prejudices our brains automatically manufacture. I’ve gleaned from the book that there are two sources of implicit bias. I’ll call them Sorting (the instantaneous calculations our minds use to place people into in-group – “Us” – and out-group – “Not Us”), and Associations (the cultural messages we absorb.) Sorting seems to be hardwired into human brains and therefore not a function we can turn off. “Conditioned by millennia of tribal warfare and...

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The Research on Bias

Posted by on Mar 12, 2011 in Changing White Mind, Race & Culture | 1 comment

The Research on Bias

“(P)eople usually resist the notion that they might be perpetrators of prejudice. Their resistance often rests on the fundamental assumption that prejudice and racism are all-or-none qualities, where one is either racist or not. Yet this assumption leaves no room for the possibility that one might sincerely hold egalitarian goals and simultaneously be at risk for perpetrating racism.“   from the introduction to Are We Born Racist? (see previous post)     Over the past several decades, hundreds of studies have been mapping bias of all kinds, including bias based on race....

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Our Brains on Race

Posted by on Mar 12, 2011 in Changing White Mind, Diverse & Global Books, Race & Culture | 6 comments

Our Brains on Race

Recently I read Are We Born Racist? New Insights from Neuroscience and Positive Psychology, a collection of short essays originally published in Greater Good Magazine. It’s a highly accessible overview of recent findings documenting the prevalence of implicit, or unconscious, bias, and offering concrete steps to ameliorate the prejudices our brains form.     There are so many juicy ideas packed into this slim volume, divided into three sections: The New Psychology of Racism, Overcoming Prejudice, and Strengthening Our Multiracial Society.   The book has inspired a series of posts...

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