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Racial Justice: Introduction

Terms To Know When Talking About Race

Allyship - Being an ally means learning from and listening to marginalized groups, empowering them, advocating for them, and looking inward to recognize your own bias and privilege.

Anti-racist - Activists and leading scholars have argued that it's not enough for allies to say they're "not racist." Instead, they have to actively adopt anti-racism, a set of beliefs and actions that oppose racism and promote the inclusion and equality of Black and brown people in society.

BIPOC - This acronym, which stands for "Black, Indigenous, and people of color," has gained popularity as a more inclusive term than "people of color" when talking about marginalized groups affected by racism.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion - Diversity initiatives aim to increase the number of people from marginalized backgrounds in places where they are underrepresented — for example, on a company's board.

Equity efforts are those that seek to "to promote justice, impartiality and fairness within the procedures, processes, and distribution of resources by institutions or systems.

Inclusion is an organizational effort "in which different groups or individuals having different backgrounds are culturally and socially accepted and welcomed, and equally treated.

Emotional Tax - "Emotional tax" refers to the unseen mental work that people from marginalized backgrounds have to do every day to feel included, respected, and safe.

Intersectionality - Intersectionality is the intertwining of social identities such as gender, race, ethnicity, social class, religion, sexual orientation, and/or gender identity, which can result in unique experiences, opportunities, and barriers.

Microaggression - Microaggressions are indirect expressions of racism, sexism, ageism, ableism, or another form of prejudice. They can be in seemingly innocuous comments from people who might be well-intentioned. However, they make another person feel different, violated, or unsafe.

Unconscious Bias - There's explicit bias, or bias we're aware of, and then there's implicit bias, or prejudicial beliefs we don't even know we have.

White Fragility - "White Fragility," explains the phenomenon as "a state in which even a minimum amount of racial stress becomes intolerable, triggering a range of defensive moves," including "the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation."

An example of this could be a Black person pointing out a white person's problematic or racist behavior and the white person immediately jumping to defend themselves, making excuses and crying instead of listening and accepting what the other person is saying.

White Privilege - White privilege is the vast set of advantages and benefits that people have solely because they are white or pass as white.

Examples include being able to walk around in a department store without being followed by a store clerk who suspects you of shoplifting, or being able to drive around a neighborhood without fearing that someone will call the police on you.

Introduction to Guide

This guide is intended as resource for the Villanova Law community and all those seeking resources for self-education and exploration around issues of racism, becoming anti-racist, social justice, and becoming an ally. 

This guide is very much a work in progress.  If you have comments or suggestions for resources to include please contact Lori Corso or Dean Centeno.  Thanks to Morgan Carey, Class of 2021, for designing this initial libGuide!

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