Confronting Young People's Perceptions of Whiteness: Privilege or Liability?
Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
© 2008 The Author. Journal Compilation © 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Volume 2, Issue 4, pages 1303–1330, July 2008
How to Cite
McKinney, K. D. (2008), Confronting Young People's Perceptions of Whiteness: Privilege or Liability?. Sociology Compass, 2: 1303–1330. doi: 10.1111/j.1751-9020.2008.00126.x
- Issue published online: 21 JUL 2008
- Article first published online: 28 JUN 2008
- Sociology Compass 2/4 (2008): 1303–1330, 10.1111/j.1751-9020.2008.00126.x
Using the autobiographies of 193 young whites, I show how contemporary whiteness is characterized by a tension between perceptions of whiteness as a liability versus a privilege. I discuss how many young whites believe whiteness to be both a cultural and economic disadvantage and suggest how these perceptions can interfere with antiracism. Finally, I suggest some pedagogical strategies for educators to use in teaching students about race and ethnicity that might help to dislodge some of these fictions of whiteness.