Analytical post WEEK 5

I thought reading Pamela Perry’s “White Means Never Having to Say You’re Ethnic.” Was interesting. I did however have few discrepancies on how she chose her pick in schools and the messages represented in the schools. There are plenty of multicultural inner city schools where academic achievement has little relationship to race if the school is within a multicultural area.  However, it was interesting to see how the differences between white identities amongst young white individuals in different environments existed. The white culture was either the norm and not defined because of a lack of opposition, or being contested, sometimes to the distain of the white students themselves. My high school was not similar to either school because I went to a majority African American school and the cultural differences there were actually surprising when you consider the students were of the same race and lived mostly in the same areas. The diversity was definitely evident because we had our different cultures, but being black, this meant this was only the norm culture to us. When white students came to our school they were usually from the area, so they shared the culture, instead of rejecting it as Perry describes in the multicultural high school. Perry describes naturalization and rationalization as being the two processes responsible for reproducing whiteness as a social norm. Naturalization takes our nation’s peoples common history and practices to define what it means to be seen as normal. Rationalization describes how whiteness and it affects are seen when being compared to a race that is marginalized by it.

2 thoughts on “Analytical post WEEK 5

  1. I agree with what you were saying about there being plenty of multicultural or inner city schools where race doesn’t have much of a correlation to academic success. It was interesting what you said about going to a high school that was predominantly African American and that when students of other races came to your school, they came from a similar background and culture, implying that race had nothing to do with academic performance. My best friend is from El Paso, where the majority of the population is Mexican. As such, he went to a school with almost all Mexican students, apart from two white girls. He experienced a great amount of academic success. I think it has less to do with race and more to do with how people look at race. For example, if a black student were to attend a predominantly white school in a wealthy area, there might be a prejudice against him, which could have an effect on academic performance. In an area where there a many cultures coming together or even a “minority” group as the majority, race won’t really have much of an effect.

  2. I enjoyed your analysis of the research presented by Perry, and that you have a different background than myself. You said that you went to a majority African American high school and everyone embraced the other cultures even if they all identified themselves as African American. In my high school the majority of the students were white, with some African American, Asian, Middle Eastern, and Latino. I think a factor to consider when looking at schools for research is their geographical location; for instance, where I grew up is about an hour from both Detroit and Dearborn, which have large populations of African Americans and Middle Eastern people whom may have migrated to my town for better schools or to be closer to family. Similar to you, my high school also had many different cultures within it, however I felt like it was more segregated. We may know individuals within our school that live culturally different than us and we may accept that, but I think that segregation with whom we engage with on a daily basis is prominent.

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