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Witnessing Whiteness: The Need to Talk About Race and How to Do It Second Edition 2nd Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1607092575
ISBN-10: 1607092573
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Editorial Reviews

Review

This book provides a compelling look at what it means to be white in America. It not only provides insight for white people, it can also be a valuable tool for people of color as together folks strive to work and live into accountable anti-racist relationships.

With refreshing honesty and forthrightness, Shelly Tochluk's Witnessing Whiteness invites readers―especially those of us who are white―to tread into the difficult terrain of confronting racism. Using rich storytelling and frank self-reflection, she skillfully engages readers in acknowledging, examining, and then taking on responsibility for racism and the work needed to dismantle it. This powerful and very readable book leads us through a clear analysis of why and how white people remain ignorant of and afraid to acknowledge racism, to laying out a practical framework for action. This book is an indispensable resource for white people who sense that racism is wrong, but don't know where to start. (Christine Sleeter, author of Un-Standardizing Curriculum)

Witnessing Whiteness is a rare and precious gem in the national literature on race and privilege. Shelly Tochluk provides readers of this comprehensive volume with a well-crafted blend of personal and analytical material, which will prove helpful for anyone lucky enough to read it. Unraveling the knot of privilege and unawareness that so often binds white Americans and weakens the struggle for racial justice is a crucial task; and Witnessing Whiteness is a brilliantly honed tool for helping with that unraveling process. (Tim Wise, author of White Like Me and Between Barack and a Hard Place)

Accessing the amazing experiences and wisdom of activists, thinkers, writers, and mythologists on the front lines of racial issues in this country, Shelly Tochluk brings to light the most important book about race in a generation. Is 'whiteness' bad in itself? When is it just part of the social, historical and cultural legacy of a people? And what is the prison/poison that this legacy bequeaths us? I highly recommend this book-it's helping raise race dialogue to a more healing and regenerative ground. (Luis J. Rodriguez, author of Always Running and Hearts & Hands)

Witnessing Whiteness explains why not paying attention to race is a problem, and how avoiding race ruins well-meaning service efforts. The book includes personal stories about how readers can develop a healthy sense of racial identity and address racial conflict. The author invites readers to take action steps to stop racism and create more just communities. (Gettysburg Times 2011-08-17)

About the Author

An educator, with a background in psychology, Shelly Tochluk spent ten years as a researcher, counselor, and teacher in California's public schools. Tochluk now trains educators to work with the diverse Los Angeles school population as an Associate Professor of Education at Mount St. Mary's College.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 268 pages
  • Publisher: R&L Education; 2 edition (January 16, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1607092573
  • ISBN-13: 978-1607092575
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #133,159 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
On Witnessing Whiteness

Shelly Tochluk calls us to witness racial practice in the U.S.
Compelling remarkable and invaluable material about racial justice. A call to witnessing from a renewed white identity, building a new white culture, the author asks us, it is possible?

What is put forth here is a proposal to build a new white identity aware and ready to make a stand for racial justice. A new white identity able to take part in the transformation of what a new racial dynamic can bring to the political, social, and economic fabric of the United States of America. It is not only a proposal, but a well documented and compelling analysis supported by historical data and a number of reputable contemporary voices in the forefront of the fight to end racism. Tochluk takes us to witnessing and invites us to look at positive contribution forms of participation and value added inclusion to the social equation from every group, especially white witnessing practices. The author widens the scope uncovering the ways racism is practiced in our 21st century. Through a number of paired interviews she conducted, she takes us through hidden forms of racism and conflict in interpersonal relations, work and educational settings. She uncovers patterns and presents us tools to deal with every situation.

This book not only makes us aware, but calls for action through very specific organizations, a kind of rod map conceptually to make a difference through witnessing practices.

Antonio Lainez
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A good starting point for people questioning racial bias and their own identities. Good for group discussions.
Helps white people deal with their guilt and shame and move into a positive posture.
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Now the word "privilege" has a whole new meaning for me. I think we all need to better understand the difference between a "privilege" and a "right." What a better place the world would be if this distinction was clearly understood.
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A real eye opener for those seeking to understand bias. The practice exercises are also excellent. Lots of food for thought - i've read this and referred back to it many times.
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It gets better and stronger as you keep reading. It's an essential guide for doing this work, covering the spiritual political psychological aspects of anti-racialism. Shelley really knows her stuff and offers it with a generous wise spirit
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Format: Paperback
This is not only an amazing book, it is a much-needed bridge, a potentially life-changing opportunity and a very helpful offering to white people walking the path of race consciousness. The key to this piece of literature is in the second part of the title: First Steps Toward an Antiracist Practice and Culture. While incredibly accessible and filled with humbling personal stories and passages from enlightening conversations with white anti-racists and people of color, it truly lays the groundwork for the possibility of change.
This book is a tool. And I have also found the website for this book a valuable tool and host of resources. [...] has discussion questions that can be downloaded (on the "book club" page) and you can also check out the full preface and introduction to the book.
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I've read a fair amount about race, class, and racism, and I found this boom took me to a new level. I recommend it.
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This book, as any book, is a work in progress. It attempts to cover a definition and a history of being unconscious of oneself in a world where not everyone has that freedom. It lays out the journey in the 21st century of people living with a variety of cultures in a variety of dynamics. One dynamic in particular that seems to test our substance daily. There is a great deal to know about oneself before we can start to see another.
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