This guide is intended to provide introductory information and resources for learning about and practicing anti-racism for the Spalding University community.
The guide's editors aim to highlight relevant and high quality resources, and we also recognize that we are operating with limits and biases resulting from our positions of privilege as allies. We welcome any feedback or recommendations for this guide, especially from marginalized voices.
Racism = prejudice + power.
Any person of any race can hold racial prejudice. In North America, however, white people hold institutional power. Therefore, in North America, racism is the structural discrimination and oppression directed against Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) based on the conscious or unconscious belief of white supremacy. Racism is not a personal attitude or choice, but rather a system of power maintained by violence.
Note: Racism is commonly defined as “prejudice against someone based on their skin color or ethnicity and can be committed by anyone.” This is not an accurate definition, for it highlights individuals' thinking and actions but ignores embedded institutional and cultural systems. In fact, Merriam-Webster Dictionary recently agreed to revise their definition of racism to include the crucial element of power, following a campaign led by recent college graduate Kennedy Mitchum.
Anti-racism is a constellation of strategies, theories, actions, and practices that work to disrupt and dismantle racism.
In the video below, writer and scholar Ibram X. Kendi describes the difference between non-racist and anti-racist, and why that distinction matters.