A Discussion On 'White Fragility'

Jul 20, 2020

In the national conversation about race borne out of the uprisings against deadly police violence targeted at Black Americans, one particular book is getting renewed attention.

White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo, who is described as an anti-racist educator, explores the defensiveness that she sees white people turning to when questioned about race and racism.

The publisher describes the concept of white fragility as "characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium and prevent any meaningful cross-racial dialogue."

Earlier this summer, Cincinnati-based St. Peter's United Church of Christ hosted a virtual panel titled "Race, Rage & Fear" based on DiAngelo's book. Rev. Derek Terry hosted three white panelists to focus on the challenges of discussing race from a white perspective.

Terry, and two of his panelists, Miami University Assistant Professor Phil Smith, Ph.D, and Director of Learning & Culture for Leadership for Educational Equity Kate McCracken, join Cincinnati Edition to further that conversation.

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