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Whiteness Studies

  • In: Encyclopedia of Identity
  • Edited by: Ronald L. Jackson II & Michael A. Hogg
  • Subject:Self & Identity, Identity, Self & Identity

As an academic field, whiteness studies began in the 1990s for the purpose of critically examining what it means to be White in the United States. Black writers such as James Baldwin and W. E. B. Du Bois wrote about whiteness much earlier. Du Bois defined whiteness as ownership of the earth. David Roediger defined whiteness as a destructive ideology exercising political force despite its discrediting as a culture, meaning that though many White people do not recognize that they ...

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