The war on ‘microaggressions:’ Has it created a ‘victimhood culture’ on campuses? – The Washington Post

One much-discussed paper says a “victimhood culture” is rising at elite American colleges.

Source: The war on ‘microaggressions:’ Has it created a ‘victimhood culture’ on campuses? – The Washington Post

Thoughtful piece, crappy headline.

Why? Because casting it in terms of ‘victimhood culture’ implies that complainants want to be seen as victims, with the attendant connotations of ‘speech police,’ ‘political correctness,’ ‘oversensitivity,’ and ‘censorship.’ Moreover, putting air quotes around both microaggressions and victimhood culture suggests a false equivalence whereby the writer is raising doubts about both notions.

Once again, it’s important to distinguish intent from impact. Microaggressions may not be intended to be hurtful, but they do come from a place of privilege. In their broadest sense, they imply that being white, straight, cis, and male is the default setting, and anything else is a departure from the norm. When people call you out on that, they’re not attacking you – they’re drawing attention to that structure of privilege. And when you sneeringly dismiss the notion of microaggression, you’re reinforcing that structure.

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Owning your privilege: Saturday morning on the Tweeter

[View the story “Owning your privilege – a teachable moment with @neville_park, @madhatressTO, and @c_9” on Storify]

[View the story “Owning your privilege – a teachable moment with @neville_park, @madhatressTO, and @c_9” on Storify]via Owning your privilege – a teachable moment with @neville_park, @madhatressTO, and @c_9 (with tweets) · sol_chrom · Storify.

http://storify.com/sol_chrom/owning-your-privilege-a-teachable-moment-with-nevi

Sometimes it happens right in front of you in real time. Not saying I’m always the quickest learner, but even a clueless old white guy can occasionally recognize a worthwhile lesson. Especially when the cybersphere is roiled by questions of privilege, sexism and condescension.