Univ of Iowa invites students to reflect on their 'whiteness'

  • The University of Iowa will hold a workshop aimed at helping students to understand their "whiteness."
  • The event description states that the discussion "can be the first step for self-reflection and assuming greater personal responsibility for eliminating racism."

The University of Iowa is holding workshops entitled “Understanding Your Whiteness to Become Better Allies,” on Nov. 30 and again in February. 

The school’s Chief Diversity Office, along with “several campus allies,” are sponsoring the event. These workshops are aimed at “people who want to learn about and discuss the inherent privileges that come with being White.”

“This can be the first step for self-reflection and assuming greater personal responsibility for eliminating racism."   

[RELATED: Calif. students learn ‘construction of whiteness’]

“This can be the first step for self-reflection and assuming greater personal responsibility for eliminating racism,” the description continues.

The workshops are being held as part of the university’s “Excellence through Diversity” initiative. A poster for the workshops includes a quote from educational consultant Emily Chiariello, which reads, “It’s impossible to see privilege and dominance associated with white racial identity without acknowledging that whiteness is a racial identity.”

The school altered its event description after Campus Reform and The College Fix  contacted the outlet.

“This interactive workshop is for people who want to learn about and discuss the inherent privileges that come with being White," the original description for the event read, according to the Fix.  "This can be the first step to eliminating false diversity and assuming greater personal responsibility for eliminating racism."

[RELATED: CU-Boulder offers class on ‘Whiteness Studies’]

In a statement responding to the Fix's inquiry, a university spokesperson said that "after receiving feedback from some campus partners, we realized we may have been unclear with our language and have since updated the description to more directly align with the workshop’s learning goals."

Follow the author of this article on Twitter @knelson1776



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Kenneth Nelson

Kenny Nelson is an Intern and Campus Correspondent, and reports on liberal bias and abuse for Campus Reform. He attends Colorado State University, where he co-founded the Battering Ram, a student-run newspaper.

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