University of Colorado Denver Offers ‘Problematizing Whiteness’ Course

Wednesday, May 29, 2019
By Paul Martin

29 May 2019

The University of Colorado Denver currently offers a course entitled “Problematizing Whiteness.”

According to a report by The College Fix, the University of Colorado Denver offers an unusual course on “whiteness.” Breitbart News reported in March that a separate course at the University of Colorado Denver intentionally removed white authors from the curriculum to order to elevate “marginalized voices.”

The course, which is titled “Problematizing Whiteness: Educating for Racial Justice,” will be taught by Professor C.E. Matias. The syllabus for the course provides some insight into what students will learn if they choose to enroll. The syllabus claims that white people are “complicit” in the plight of people of color in America.

Critical Whiteness Studies provides a deeper analysis of race that accounts for both sides of the race coin: the plight of people of color AND how Whites are complicit. This class looks deeper into how race operates within White contexts and how that impacts people of color so we bridge how Whites AND people of color can work together towards a racially equitable society.

The syllabus, which is largely incoherent, goes on to argue that white people must play an active role in examining the role that “whiteness,” a social concept, plays in holding back minorities.

The study of whiteness has always sought to challenge racism, racial privilege, white supremacy, and colorblind racism. However, to overindulge in the spectacle of “white racial epiphanies” overlooks the ongoing work whites must do to participate in racial justice. Beyond the feel-good of momentary White racial awareness lurk enormous concerns about how to continually examine Whiteness in order to uphold antiracism, moreover the fruition of a more racially just society. As such, this class critically and emotionally uses a transdisciplinary approach to examine the formation and manifestations of Whiteness while also developing students’ courageous ability to expand articulations of Whiteness by engaging in racially just projects.

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