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By Richard Dyer
Display, vol. 29, no. four, Autumn 1988, pp. 44–64
An vital textual content within the improvement of severe whiteness experiences. Later improved right into a publication.
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Extra resources for White
Rather than “naming the word and the world” as a site of structures of exploitation and domination and of self-conscious struggles to alter it, we are to embrace this new world. ” In this social and pedagogic project, we are to be convinced that there are no realistic alternatives to the neoliberal and neoconservative projects and outlooks that circulate so widely. In the process, such active consent will make it much harder for emancipatory educational projects such as those articulated by Freire to go on or even to seem sensible to those who are oppressed.
How do we interrupt common sense? How do we create pedagogies that are deeply connected to the daily realities of people’s lives and to struggles to overcome exploitation and domination in a time when the right has already understood how such connections might be creatively (albeit manipulatively) made? Who is this “we” in the first place? 1 These of course are difficult questions. And our answers to them may be partial, flawed, contradictory, or temporary. 2 While these questions are difficult, they do have immense theoretical and practical implications.
In a time when the university puts immense pressure on people to act like possessive individuals and when forms of solidarity are being fractured ideologically and materially both within the university and between cultural workers at universities and other sites of struggle in “the real world,” I want us to explore the possibility that one of the uses of Freire and other radical scholar/activists among some people has been to create an illusion of political commitment while managing to make no sacrifices in one’s goal of individual advancement and prestige.