- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Routledge; 1 edition (November 15, 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1138037222
- ISBN-13: 978-1138037229
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 9.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #301,077 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Dismantling the Racism Machine: A Manual and Toolbox 1st Edition
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About the Author
Karen Gaffney is a Professor of English at Raritan Valley Community College in New Jersey, where she teaches courses in composition, gender, and race. She focuses on antiracism activism in the community, on her blog (dividednolonger.com), and in workshops at the White Privilege Conference and Netroots Nation.
Top customer reviews
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Karen takes us back to the days in which the machine was created and walks us through to the so called post-racial era explaining how this machine has been recalibrated through history and continues to function strong as ever. She provides clear actions readers can take to do their part in dismantling the Racism Machine.
Her approach to this difficult topic is very clear, accessible and easy to digest for those just beginning to explore the uncomfortable topic of racism. At the end of each section are reflection questions, recommended resourses, websites and books as well as all the works cited. Dismantling the Racism Machine provides a wealth of information and resources without being overwhelming.
I consider this a must read for all community groups and organizations. Thank you, Karen Gaffney, for creating this Manual and Toolbox!
The fifth and last step is Take Apart the Racism Machine. The section is no ordinary conclusion but fifty pages of strategies; prompts; assignment sequences; groups to check out on the web; readings and other media, with frameworks for discussion; and approaches useful for different audiences, including educators at all levels. On the final pages, Dr. Gaffney discusses her own savvy action assignments with college students.
As for the book’s content, the opening Steps describe the invention of race as a human category and the construction of the racism machine. European planters in the new world protected their wealth and managed their work force by imposing and legalizing distinctions among different non-European groups, with the darkest-skinned people at the bottom. Throughout the nineteenth century, whiteness became the badge of legalized supremacy as surely as dark skin become the badge of inferiority.
After the Civil Rights era, the Machine was recalibrated to single-out “model minorities” such as Asian-Americans on the one hand and, on the other, to create “wars” on drugs and crime that just happened to incarcerate masses of Black people. Dr. Gaffney describes the continued operation of such divide-and-conquer strategies up to the present day.
The book is historically, legally, and politically eye-opening, as are the wealth of the resources that it offers readers who are looking for a place to stand to join the dismantling.
While only a couple hundred pages, this book can serve as a stand-alone textbook for a course, or as a lesson plan reference guide. The amount of material available is astounding and well organized. Dr. Gaffney's work is also well cited, allowing readers to bibliographically backtrack to their heart's content.
The reading level is appropriate for high school or college, however advanced middle school students will find this accessible as well. There are even K-8 resources in the book of the book.
On a personal note, I found this text invaluable as well. As a minority woman, I assumed I understood racism respectably well having experienced it, but I learned so many things about myself and my own past through Dr. Gaffney's translation of scholarly works "into accessible concepts, history, and action items."
Get this book and read it now!