White privilege is like an invisible weightless knapsack of special provisions, maps, passports, codebooks, visas, clothes, tools, and blank checks.

— Peggy McIntosh

The most valuable Peggy McIntosh quotes that will add value to your life

White privilege is the unquestioned and unearned set of advantages, entitlements benefits and choices bestowed on people solely because they are white. Generally white people who experience such privilege do so without being conscious of it.

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I think whites are carefully taught not to recognize white privilege, as males are taught not to recognize male privilege.

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As a white person, I realized I had been taught about racism as something that puts others at a disadvantage, but had been taught not to see one of its corollary aspects, white privilege, which puts me at an advantage.

57

For me white privilege has turned out to be an elusive and fugitive subject.

The pressure to avoid it is great, for in facing it I must give up the myth of meritocracy. If these things are true, this is not such a free country; one's life is not what one makes it; many doors open for certain people through no virtues of their own.

56

one question for me and others like me is whether .

.. we will get truly distressed, even outraged, about unearned race advantage and conferred dominance and, if so, what we will do to lessen them.

52

Most talk by whites about equal opportunity seems to me now to be about equal opportunity to try to get into a position of dominance while denying that systems of dominance exist.

52

I was taught to see racism only in individual acts of meanness, not in invisible systems conferring dominance on my group

29

If my day, week, or year is going badly, I need not ask of each negative episode or situation whether it has racial overtones.

9

I can take a job with an affirmative action employer without having my co-workers on the job suspect that I got it because of my race.

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Privilege exists when one group has something of value that is denied to others simply because of the groups they belong to, rather than because of anything they’ve done or failed to do. Access to privilege doesn’t determine one’s outcomes, but it is definitely an asset that makes it more likely that whatever talent, ability, and aspirations a person with privilege has will result in something positive for them.

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Whites are taught to think of their lives as morally neutral, normative, and average, and also ideal, so that when we work to benefit others, this is seen as work that will allow 'them' to be more like 'us'.

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Power from unearned privilege can look like strength when it is in fact permission to escape or to dominate.

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About Peggy McIntosh

Quotes 13 sayings
Profession Activist
Birthday November 7, 1934
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