Originally Posted by The Rain Dog
Look I completely agree - except at the end of the day there are always going to be selfish simple assholes - if you rationalise away their racism, they'll simply be selfish simple assholes to people based on some other arbitrary criteria.
I agree with you. I'm not trying to rationalize away racism. But I think the interventions for reducing racism have to be different for someone who is deliberately and thoughtfully being racist and for people who don't know that they are being racist, but are because of their privileged position. I mean, the mere title of Elliot's experiments, "How racist are you?," is problematic. If she is trying to get at power dynamics, labeling people who do discriminatory acts as racists puts them on the defensive and doesn't allow for a real conversation about power. I'm a huge fan of this video, "How to tell people they sound racist." People are not going to hear what you have to say if you accuse them of *being* racist. Rather one should fashion the conversation around what they are *doing* is racist.
Originally Posted by Parker
Nobody disagrees with that, but that's also part of the point of the training or experiment or whatever. If you only deal with this for two hours, imagine having to deal with it routinely. If at the end of the day, those two hours forces someone to think about the world differently, then it's better than not having the experience at all, no?
I'd be interested in seeing a 5- or 10-year followup with participants. I'm betting few of the blue-eyed people have changed their tune. There is a bunch of research on interventions that show their effects fade over time mainly because without the lessons being reinforced and supported by others in their community, the lessons get lost. My friend works with a peer summer camp in which kids do all sorts of prejudice reduction exercises, etc. Kids who would never have sat in the same room are playing together and being friends. But follow-up interviews suggest that when they go back to school and hang with their friends or parents, who often have differing opinions, they don't have the support to maintain those changed attitudes.
And I already mentioned that Elliot was fighting the good fight. Her intentions are great and if people get something out of these exercises, then it is worthwhile. My point for conversation is, if we are going to bring people together to work on a common social problem, having one group of people assault and harass another group of people is not the ideal way to do it.
Originally Posted by Muzman
They're interesting those things. I always think that I can 'beat' them by virtue of being a gamer though. It'd be interesting to see how other people do.
My students never believe the results. They take the same test again and again because they think if they know what they are supposed to do, they can beat it. Unfortunately, our instincts get the better of us under time constraints.
Edited by Diva - 4/13/12 at 8:57am