Beverly Daniel Tatum Writing Styles in 'Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?': A Psychologist Explains the Development of Racial Identity

Beverly Daniel Tatum
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Perspective

The perspective of Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria is unambiguous. Tatum defends a number of clear theses about the nature of racism, race, racial identity and the remedies for racism. Racism, Tatum argues, is a system of advantage based on race. In doing so, Tatum opts for an institutional rather than a more psychological or individualist concept of racism. A consequence of Tatum's definition is that racism is thoroughly social, i.e., irreducible to personal mental attitudes. Further, only dominant classes in a racist society can be racist.

Tatum is also relatively noteworthy for defending the development of racial identity as positive and constructive rather than dangerous and divisive. She outlines a theory of the development of racial identity that suggests that such development is a positive part of a good human life. While race is a socially constructed category, it should...

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This section contains 723 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the 'Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?': A Psychologist Explains the Development of Racial Identity Study Guide
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