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white-fragility

The Non-Falsifiable Fallacy of White Fragility

This is the fifth installment of our walkthrough on White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo. In this installment we cover chapter 3. The three major criticisms that come out in this chapter is first Robin DiAngelo is setting up a non-falsifiable argument. Heads I win, tails you lose. To disagree with her is to enact racism.

Second she believes that the younger generation is more racist than previous generations, which is an odd claim. She also seems to think that this “third wave” of racism is equitable to slavery and Jim Crow.

Lastly, she interchangeably uses different definitions of racism. Chapter 2 insists racism is a system. In chapter 3, it’s behavioral.

Operating Definitions

Modernism – the belief that man can achieve his own enlightenment
Postmodernism – the denial of absolute truth in favor of personal experience
Marxism – the social, political, and economic philosophy named after Karl Marx, which examines the effect of capitalism on labor, productivity, and economic development and argues for a worker revolution to overturn capitalism in favor of communism. (Investopedia)
Critical Theory – a social, economic, political philosophy that applies the bourgeoise vs proletariat dynamic in Marxism to every cultural dynamic.
Synonymous: Cultural Marxism
Critical Race Theory – the application of Cultural Marxism as it relates to racial dynamics, disparities, whereby an oppressor vs victim relationship is created among racial or socially-constructed racial lines.
Intersectionality – the navigation of postmodernism where personal experience is given hierarchy depending on the lens of the individual. The more intersections of oppression, according to Critical Theory, an individual has, the clearer the more valuable their experience is.
Social Justice – the remedying of perceived oppressor versus victim dynamics according to Critical Theory
Standpoint Epistemology – the belief that a person is limited in their understanding of Scripture according to their Intersectionality

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