Race Perceptions Amongst Millennials: Willful Ignorance of a Generation? (2012)

This research examines how racial equality and racial interactions are perceived by the Millennial Generation, those born after the year 1982. I critically evaluate the legitimacy of the colorblind theory as it applies to this new cohort. The colorblind theory, which states that we live in racially equal society where racism is best resolved by not talking of the issue as discussion of the problem would promote further racism, directly juxtaposes colorism, a theory that emphasizes that discrimination is based on the shade of skin color. This study will analyze responses of the interviewed and their skin color for any possible correlation between the perceived racism and the shade of skin color. The research tests the validity of these contrasting theories by conducting qualitative in-depth interviews with Millennials in Los Angeles and Chicago. The research will be complemented by field observation.

 

Social Justice through Social Constructs: Confronting Racial Identities and Privileges (2014)

This research investigates the experience of intergroup dialogue pedagogy on class participants in a small, liberal arts college class on race and ethnicity. Experiences in such a course are characterized by increasing awareness of personal experiences with racial privilege or oppression, by bridging understanding between agent and target racial identity groups, and by instilling in participants a long-term commitment to social justice. Based on multiple semi-structured interviews with eight of the sixteen class participants (equally represented from target and agent identities), along with samples of their journals and in-class activities, I find that dialogue pedagogy increased awareness of multiple, intersecting social identities among both white students and students of color. However, white students were perceived by their counterparts of color to have taken more limited risks in engaging in the dialogue, which unintentionally reproduced the relationships of privilege and oppression that were the subject of the course.