White - The Matter of Whiteness Summary & Analysis

Richard Dyer
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Summary

In the first chapter of White, author Richard Dyer first explains that his book will explore representations, or imagery, of white people, recognizing that a failure to examine whiteness is to continue the problematic political, social, and academic practice of assuming that whiteness is the human norm, or a default state of being. Despite postmodern literature and media focused on the fragmentation of identity – looking at gender, sexuality, race, and class – Dyer states it is crucial to recognize the countervailing tendency of homogenization, wherein US domination of world culture perpetuates the idea of whiteness as being normal while non-whites are the exception, or difference.

Next, Dyer traces the origins of his interest in whiteness back to his experience growing up queer. Through a series of anecdotes – one involving a childhood crush on a Jewish boy, another focusing on his romantic relationship...

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This section contains 1,501 words
(approx. 4 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the White Study Guide
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