Women's Center Film Series: Mirrors of Privilege: Making Whiteness Visible.
Oct 15, 2013
from 06:00 pm to 08:00 pm
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In conjunction with Diversity and Inclusion Programs, the Women's Center is pleased to offer our first film this season which will be followed by a discusssion.
Mirrors of Privilege, a simply made but surprisingly compelling film, introduces white people to the part of our whiteness we've learned not to see, through a series of conversations with white people who have thought deeply about race. A professor of women’s studies from New York recalls feeling baffled after reading two essays from African American women arguing that white women were oppressive to work for. “How can that be?” she wondered. “We’re so nice.” She decided to investigate. “If I have anything I didn't earn,” she told herself, “show me.” She meditated over this challenge and within three months had identified 46 examples.
Throughout the film, some scenarios are powerfully illustrated in dance. One tableau shows three people, down on all fours, lined up shoulder to shoulder. Across their backs reclines a white woman, languorously reading a book, oblivious to the trembling arms of the black man who’s holding her up.
These are images and voices that have been largely missing from America’s discussion of race—articulate, principled, caring white people struggling to come to grips with their own fear, guilt, and ambivalence. They form, as anti-racism activist Van Jones puts it, “a cry from the heart of white people working to restore their own humanity.”