Whiteness. A Problem for our Time

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Tavistock Policy Seminar

10 November 2020

Time: 19:00 - 21:00

Price: Free

Location: online

Whiteness. A Problem for our Time with Helen Morgan

Description

Join us for a Tavistock Policy Seminar with Helen Morgan, examining white privilege and white fragility from a psychoanalytic perspective.

This presentation is rooted in the assumption that the problem of racism today is a problem of whiteness and that it is an examination of this construct of whiteness, therefore, which needs to be central to seeking a solution to this destructive dynamic. A key and urgent question then for those of us who are regarded as white is, how do we interrogate our whiteness to bring about the radical change that is required?

‘Whiteness’ is a lived experience and a substantial factor in how one navigates the world and how one is navigated around by others. The ‘fragility’, the colour-blind approach and the silencing process of disavowal that develops in the childhood of white liberal families, are means of maintaining white privilege and racism. A psychoanalytic approach can, therefore, be useful in understanding psychological implications but only as one part of a wider perspective.

The work required of whiteness and the letting go of privilege is essential if we are to dismantle the system of racism that is so embedded within our society. I argue this is no altruistic endeavour but that, whilst clearly doing untold harm to black people, such a system also limits and distorts the development of white individuals and the society in which we are citizens.

 

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