quick response to Hsu

07 Apr
I just have to make a quick response to Hsu's piece. It dangerously seems to be talking about post-racial society…and if you read a bit of Kent Ono, you'll see why this is…problematic. Hsu feels too idealistic – quoting Carter talking about crossing a bridge, "defining ourselves by lifestyle rather than skin color." It disregards the history. I have discussions about this all the time – of reverse racism, with various people – and we question whether reverse racism can really exist (yes, of course it can), but whether that racism is the same sort of oppressive racism that was put upon people of color all throughout history (no, it's not).

There is a history of white hegemony and Western imperialism that can't simply be erased because we have Obama in office, which seems to be what Hsu is trying to at least make us think about. And whereas I appreciate Hsu bringing this into the conversation – the possibility of a post-racial world, one in which white people are culturally bankrupt (really? REALLY? have you taken a look at those things that make up "culture" in our society? Asian kids still play classical music written by mostly dead, white, European men — why??), we have to remember to not disregard the history of oppression and white superiority that has ruled our modern world by being blinded with the idea of a harmonious, almost bohemian-esque, kumbaya "we are beyond race" mentality.

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Posted by on April 7, 2011 in Uncategorized


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