Peggy McIntosh's "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible…
Peggy McIntosh's "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack"
Although men may work to improve the status of women, they are unwilling to recognize and relinquish their advantage, thus reinforcing their male privilege.
Male privilege is similar to white privilege.
McIntosh contends that whites are ignorant of their white privilege similar to how males are ignorant of their male privilege.
: McIntosh uses a metaphor to explain:
"White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools and blank checks."
Once whites acknowledge white privilege, they are accountable and must work to lessen or end it.
Both males and whites have learned to accept their privilege without acknowledging how they oppress women and people of color.
teaches whites that they are the norm; an "unfairly advantaged person" who expects people of color to follow and embrace the white ideal that whites embody.
: McIntosh lists the effects of white privilege, which people of color cannot depend upon, but notes that these privileges are also influenced by class, religion, ethnic status and/or geographic location.
In understanding the advantages of white privilege (through her list), McIntosh argues that the "myth of meritocracy," or the idea that people progress based on ability and talent rather than class and privilege or wealth is untrue.
White privilege negates the idea of the American Dream for people below the imaginary line of social justice.
White skin color is the color of the dominant culture, and gives one control of that culture.
Whiteness protects and uplifts, and in effect, white culture blindly instructs whites to be combative towards and dismissive of people of color.
: "Privilege" is an inappropriate word for the unfair advantages whites receive due to skin color because white privilege creates dominance in relation to race and sex (male). !
McIntosh argues that whites should begin by noting the difference between "positive advantages" and "negative types of advantages"; "positive advantages" should be disseminates among all people, while "negative types of advantages" should be rejected.
Most men are not worried about male privilege; most white students do not understand how their "whiteness" produces the idea of race and racism.
While types of oppression such as age, ethnic, physical ability, nationality, religion or sexual orientation are related, McIntosh contends that they should be considered apart from each other, as separate issues of "unearned advantage."
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McIntosh defines the differences between "earned strength" and "unearned power" in that "unearned power" may appear like strength when really it is a way to dominate; she reiterates that some of the privileges should be the norm for all people.
Her list is based on things she's taken for granted on a daily basis. She argues for a different "taxonomy of privilege."
McIntosh argues that "White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools and blank checks" (Para 3).
of the door. McIntosh states, "Many doors open for certain people through no virtues of their own" (Para 9).
McIntosh uses other kinds of comparisons to demonstrate her claims. For example, the comparison of male privilege to white privilege, and the comparison of the oppression of white women by white males to the oppression of women of color by white women. Her evidence is primarily comprised of personal experience and intellectual observations based on her expertise in Feminist Studies. !
McIntosh's essay is in the genre of academic discourse.
Her purpose is to inform and persuade. As academic discourse, this is an informed argument.
WHITE PRIVILEGE :warning:
"The Imaginary Line of Social Justice."
Rhetor: Peggy McIntosh
CLAIMS PER PARAGRAPH