Thursday, January 22, 2009

morning thoughts

As I reread yesterday's post, it seemed bitter and a bit dramatic. I hadn't realized that when I wrote it--I really wasn't feeling bitter or dramatic when I wrote it. I just meant to point out something I've noticed in our culture. My experience is that there is more denial in the U.S. about racial prejudice than in other countries. Do you think that's true? (Although now that I think more about that, it could be because people in other countries don't see racial prejudice as necessarily negative, at least to the extent that we do, and are thus more open about it.)

Yesterday I was thinking that this would all make a really good SNL skit. And maybe they've done something with it already. I don't watch SNL anymore so I wouldn't know. (It's weird how being married to someone from a different culture can change your perception of what's funny. There are some shows I could possibly enjoy on my own, like SNL and The Daily Show, but when I've watched them with J they seem so heavy-handed, crude, and aggressive. Our sense of humor in the U.S. can be quite naturalistic.) Anyway, one comedy we do watch sometimes is The Office, and Steve Carell does an excellent "prejudiced but in denial," doesn't he?


Brenda said...

Hi there! He sure does.

athena said...

yes there's racial prejudice in this country. there's racial prejudice in many other countries too. the french have a big problem with denial.

i didn't comment in the previous post but i wanted to say that i don't share the same sentiments when i see a black person (not sure how that study was done). i do and have felt uncomfortable though walking in a bad neighbourhood but that could be of any colour.

Calandria said...

I first read about these studies in the book Blink by Malcolm Gladwell. They are studies done on unconscious bias. The studies showed that people of all skin colors more closely associate black people with evil and danger than they do whites.

Ballerina Girl said...

haven't watched the ofice yet...gabriela gave it to me, so i must get to that!
i also understand with being married to another culture. hahaha, that was kinda funny how I worte that...I meant...being married to a person from another culture!
it does change your viewpoint of many US things...and then living outside the US for almost 7 years now...changes you even more!
thanks for your posts...don't worry about being bitter!
it is an enjoyable read...not everyone will agree with everything!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, to be honest, I can't think of a country that doesn't have racial prejudice. It's just part of being human, unfortunately. We're born with judgmental tendencies ingrained in our systems and it is up to us to get them out. It can be done, but it's hard to do.

The Office is the only show we actually go out of our way to watch, and yes, Michael Scott is amazingly prejudiced-and-in-denial. It's a beautiful satire!

athena said...

i don't know the book by malcolm gladwell or know anything about him but those studies seem outdated by at least fifty years. maybe a hundred. no offence but really, associating black people with evil and danger than whites? these days it's more along the lines of associating blacks with poverty and absent fathers.

Calandria said...

The studies are very current. Google "implicit bias" and you'll find a slew of them.