What Different Kinds of Privilege?

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Joined: 6 May 2019
Gender: Female
Posts: 809

13 Jul 2019, 11:40 am

The trouble is that some of us are questioning it because of nuance/personal history/reading history books and some people are questioning it because it's inconvenient to acknowledge that the majority/settlers have the power. Those are two different things.

I think best explained by 1 how colonialism works and 2 how immigrants from poor nations get treated 3 how people who look different get treated (this is why white power minorities get treated better than others, although the history of anti-Semitism has a lot of obsession with 'this is what Jewish people look like' and I can think of other egs along these lines) and 4 how nomadic people get treated, whether Roma or Pavee or Native American or (historically) Jewish people - if you have a recognised homeland and live in a house you get treated better than if you live in a tent or wagon and/or have no specific homeland.

(my own racism which I want to combat is against Pavee people I never used to have it but I lived near some bad ones and I find it hard to separate their race from their crimes as the conversation is so full of racial prejudice against them, I think it's that the culture has been ruined by lack of opportunities since traditional crafts died out? I know very few settled people who aren't prejudiced against them including other Irish/other Irish diaspora but I've watched documentaries on how they get treated in Ireland as a result of this almost universal prejudice and, nobody belongs on the side of a motorway without running water or electricity)

Not every culture will fit all 4, in fact I don't think any do. But those things are used to hold power over people in an institutionalised way.

I'm not denying that institutionalised racism exists or that some groups hold power over other groups, I'm simply denying that it is the same people who hold the power everywhere and across history.

I also deny that anyone is sitting in a dark room plotting all this which is how it can sometimes come across or that anyone chooses to have privilege. We ought to talk more about it in theoretical terms rather than accusing people of it.