Just joking- this isn’t going to be a long ranting blog post on race. Or maybe it is…we’ll see. Recently I watched the MTV documentary ‘White People’ which was certainly interesting to say the least. I think what probably made it a bit awkward was the fact the documentary maker (journalist Jose Antonio Vargas) was Asian. This scenario tends to create what psychologists call ‘the interviewer effect’ which is when a certain characteristic the interviewer possesses affects the answers of those they are interviewing. Nevertheless, from what I saw, the participants in the documentary were quite honest despite this.
The documentary mainly centred on the idea of ‘white privilige’. To break the concept down simply, it’s the idea that white people live an easier life simply because of their skin colour. Certain things such as stereotypes, that act as barriers to success for people of colour may not necessarily be a problem for a white person. Many tend to deny it exists, or probably don’t know what it is. To tackle this problem one boy was even holding white privilege workshops in his university (or ‘college’ in American terms.) I like that he was doing this because at the end of the day, although so many debates and discussions take place regarding race, hardly any action is actually taken.
Although, there were awkward moments, I definitely liked that the documentary got me thinking about race issues from another perspective. I would recommend you give it a watch when browsing through youtube in your spare time.