Undoing Racism Workshop

March 31, 2009 purchasemymind3
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Over Spring break, I attended an Undoing Racism Workshop sponsored by The People’s Institute of Survival and Beyond along with two of my student diversity committee members. The workshop consisted of about 25-30 people; doctors, psychiatrists, graduate students, law students, social workers, and activists hoping to make a change. I was very eager to see what this workshop had to offer on “Undoing Racism” because I was a firm believer that racism could not be undone. I’ve decided not to talk about everything discussed for the sake of keeping my blogs at a reasonable length but I do want to touch upon a few things, open for debate. First and foremost, it is nearly impossible to “Undo” Racism without fully understanding what racism is. Just because you are in a diverse setting doesn’t mean you were exposed to the measures of diversity. It is fair to say that each individual can have prejudice thoughts and opinions towards other races or even to their own, but what this workshop focused on was the ability to take the opinion  of an individual and move it towards a collective mindset in order to see any changes. Secondly, our nation is a race constructed society. Prejudice emerges from the systematic laws that was created when the Constitution was being written. Every institution and system (education, healthcare, social services, etc) was built with intent when white supremecy was the law. Since white supremecy is sanctioned by the state, the concept of white is a political bias in favor to them. It is almost as if the closer you are to being white, the closer you are to being human. In ways, racism is an illusion since it is a natural process as individuals to internalize white superiority. If you don’t speak the white institutional language, it is harder for you to survive because our nation was built from the beginning with this notion. This nation operates on color coding; White-Caucasoid, Red- Australoid, Black- Negroid, Yellow- Mongoloid, and Brown-Australoid. With these ism’s, every other race besides the Caucasoid technically cannot be racist or at least cannot act on their racism for they do not have the insitutional power to support them. Lastly, Undoing racism is a verb, not a noun. Action needs to take place in order to change this constructed society based on written documents who decided that not everyone is equal. The video above is of David, one of the speakers at the workshop. The video will elaborate on what I have discussed above, and give you a preview of what I was able to experience by attending this workshop.


I recommend everyone to participate in this workshop at one point in their lives. It truely changes your pespective on how you see the world and other people. Even if you think you already know everything about race and prejudices, I advise you to give this workshop a chance, and be vulnerable to the new ideas that will be presented to you about race in the United States.

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