Summary Of Can We Talk By Beverly Tatum

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In Beverly Tatum’s, Defining Racism: “Can We Talk?” she states the difference between racism and prejudice. According to Tatum, prejudice is “preconceived judgment or opinion, usually based on limited information” (Tatum 67). While racism is the belief that one’s race is superior to another. Prejudice is derived from limited information and is formed based on beliefs or misconceptions of others. Racism stems from information already possessed about a certain race. Once racism is present within a person, it seems that the hatred stems so deep that it is hard to change it. Throughout Tatum's piece she does speak of other minorities, but, the basis of her argument surrounds African Americans. Contradicting Tatum’s article, Lee states that “racial …show more content…

The evidence Lee provides is essentially accurate because she herself is an Asian American woman. She has dealt with the “model minority” stereotype in her own life experiences so it makes her a good candidate to be researching the students at AHS. Although Lee is an educated ethnographer,it does leave room for her results to include inaccuracies. When she first arrived at the school to begin researching, she noted that “in addition to my ethnic/racial identity and social-class identity, I discovered that my gender, age, American-born status, and position as a graduate student influenced how students reacted to me” (Lee, 2009, p.20). Some of the students recognized these pieces of her identity and then accepted her into their lives. Lee then gave an accurate portrayal of their beliefs and daily life. However, for the students who saw Lee as an outsider their story might not have been illustrated the way they deemed to be true. Lee states that it was “difficult for me to gain the acceptance of the low-achieving Asian Americans” (Lee, 2009, p.21). Lee is unable to fully connect with some of the Asian american students, especially the new wavers. After interviewing a new wave student she states that “it was obvious I had offended her… I learned to be more careful about how I approached new wave students” (Lee, 2009, p.45). Although Lee eventually gets insight into some of the low achieving students lives, she still may fail to produce as much detail as she did to the other groups. Overall, Stacey Lee does an in depth job of assessing the lives of the students attending Academic High but, there is room for potential error for the students she cant connect as well

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