Roundup: First Blog Carnival on Privilege

29 03 2010

Welcome to the First Blog Carnival on Privilege!  First, thanks to all the bloggers who contributed to this first round of the carnival.  I was excited to see all the different takes on privilege represented here, and the diversity of those who submitted.  You can see all the entries below the cut, and follow links through to read the complete posts.  I also want to announce that we will be having a second carnival, since this first round was so successful.  To give everyone plenty of time to think about submissions, the second carnival entries will be due Sunday, May 23rd.  The topic for the second carnival will be White Privilege, so start thinking about race and racism for your posts.  I would also accept posts for the second carnival that deal with other sorts of racial privilege, for example if you want to write about a community where one group is privileged based on the color of their skin, but that group isn’t “white,” that’s perfectly fine.  Submissions again can be e-mailed to judithavory@gmail.com.  If we get a lot of submissions again, then I’ll probably switch over to a monthly format, and perhaps ask for other hosts for future carnivals.  Also, because this came up a couple of times in this round, I do prefer new posts, but if you want to submit an older post for a carnival and not rehash an issue, that’s also fine.

And now, on with the carnival!

Read the rest of this entry »

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Reminder: Blog Carnival on Privilege

22 03 2010

Don’t forget, submissions are due this Sunday for the Carnival!  (Scroll down this blog to see all the details).  We’ve got a ton of great submissions so far, so thank you if you’ve already submitted.





Call for Posts: First Blog Carnival on Privilege

28 02 2010

What: Posts on any aspect of privilege.

When: Due March 28, 2010.

Where: E-mail post links to judithavory@gmail.com and see the carnival at A Lesbian & A Scholar.

I’ve been trying to find some good blog posts about privilege recently, and so I tried Googling for a blog carnival on privilege to find a round-up.  I was surprised that there doesn’t appear to have been a blog carnival on privilege yet, with the exception of one carnival specifically exploring white privilege from a Muslim perspective.  So I decided to host the first Blog Carnival on Privilege.  Here’s how it works:

Write a post about privilege.  It can be general, perhaps about how privilege operates, how we internalize it, or how it applies to particular spheres.  It can also be specific, maybe about white privilege, male privilege, straight privilege, cis privilege, ability privilege, class privilege, Western privilege, or a category I’ve left out here.  You might talk about privilege in the blogosphere, or in the workplace, or in academia, or in the media.  You might tell a story from your own life, or provide some tips on how to approach privilege.  Anything goes.

You have until March 28, 2010 to write the post, put it on your blog or website, and give me the link.  Please include a link, the name of your blog or website, and the name you’d like me to use on the carnival post (preferably a first name or alias/username).  If all goes well, I’ll do some future carnivals focusing on a specific privilege and start rotating the hosting, but let’s get through one first!

Any questions, comment to this post or e-mail me.  Please feel free to re-post this announcement liberally!





Perspective: Race and Nation

24 01 2009

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about perspective this week.  

It’s a topic I often hone in on, though in my everyday life I settle fairly firmly into my own shoes, like most people.  Still, I remember the absolute eureka moment when I once learned about some particular African tribal practice (don’t ask me now what it was) and it occurred to me, some time late in my high school career, that I didn’t know shit about what it meant to look at a problem from a different perspective.  I thought I knew difference, but in fact, the multitude of options of this world are always going to be beyond my grasp – and I like that.  I like knowing that there’s always a new way of looking at things, a new way of understanding.

Wednesday night, I went to an MLK week discussion called “Open Mouth, Insert Foot: An Open Community Discussion on Hate.”  Though a lot of what we talked about were things I’d already considered, I did hear some perspectives that were new to me.  It had never occurred to me, for example, that when journalists always mention that the Postville immigration raids happened at the largest kosher meatpacking plant in the country, the decision to include the kosher part might be interpreted as anti-Semitic, even though Judaism is part of my (rather complex and syncretic) faith.  As a panelist put it, “those guys weren’t Jewish crooks.  They were crooks.”

Yesterday, I listened to an inspiring address by National Urban League President Marc Morial on the topic of Obama’s presidency and the new multi-racial America.  He’s a fabulous speaker, and even in a lecture hall at the law school with maybe thirty people, he spoke as if he were addressing a crowd of hundreds.  He made a lot of very poignant statements, but the one I copied down was this: “We as we look to the future cannot be restrained and straitjacketed by the analytical frameworks of the past.”  A simple statement, yes, but immensely powerful.  He spoke about how whites will soon no longer be the majority, but also about how minorities themselves are complex and diverse – more Africans and Caribbean blacks, for example, are coming to this country, and Latino and Asian populations are similarly made up of individuals from a variety of backgrounds, with a variety of interests, values, and concerns.  He didn’t mention this, but I also thought about how ethnic minorities include women, and LGBT people, and linguistic and religious minorities.  He spoke about how the society is not post-racial, but multi-racial, and we should embrace that.  I wholeheartedly agree.  I also would add that we should reach across lines, find commonalities and use those points to approach and learn about difference.  For example, I have friends who are women of color whom I met because we share a lesbian sexuality.  Though I’m learning how to do this in appropriate ways, I would like to use this connection to ask questions about these friends’ perspectives as a racial minority, and as women of color specifically, and I would like to learn what interests and concerns these friends have that are different from my own, both as someone who may be involved in policy and also just as an interested citizen.

Finally, I read this article by Robert Kagan for my European Union law class, and I found it very interesting (and readable whether you’re a legal person or not).  Rather than race, it’s talking about the difference in perspectives based on position of power, comparing the United States and Europe, and it’s a way of looking at geopolitics that I hadn’t quite considered.

As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts on any of this.