New Independent Lens Documentary

Doll_StudyLast week, PBS premiered a new documentary on racism as part of the Independent Lens program. The one-hour film, American Denial, uses the 1944 investigation of Swedish intellectual Gunnar Myrdal into “America’s race problem” as a way to highlight the disconnection between the stated values of US society (it’s citizens as well as its founding documents) and the lived reality of people of color.

It provides a succinct, non-jargon-y entry into some key points of antiracist analysis, including internalized inferiority and superiority.

It is available to view in full at the above link until May 24, 2015.

Race, Perceptions and Stereotypes

Some interesting social science research on race, perceptions and stereotypes and how they play into white supremacy and internalized oppression/inferiority. Highlights from an NPR story (listen to the story or read the transcript at the link):

SAPERSTEIN: If someone went from being employed to being unemployed, or being out of prison to being in prison, or being off welfare to being on welfare, the interviewer was more likely to see the person as black – after they experienced that sort of downward mobility – than before.

And,

And she [Saperstein]  found that when people went to prison, they became more likely to think of themselves as black. And that’s because their minds were also subject to this very same stereotypes.