The Brown Case and the Cole War

While reading “Brown as a Cold War Case”, I noticed that the value of context in relation to historical events is great. In high school when I learned about the Brown Case nothing beyond what it was and what it did was taught or discussed. Through reading this article, it relates the case to what was going on in the world at the time and emphasizes the importance of considering context when studying history.

Since the Brown case was an international story and America was under a microscope because of their leader role in the Cold War, I wonder if the result would have been different had there been less publicity and attention. Is the public attention what swayed the case?

Context is so important because it influences events so strongly. Merely studying the event itself isn’t deep enough because there’s so much happening around it that shapes it.

The Effects of Implicit Bias on Black Preschoolers

Implicit bias is the idea that people create certain judgements on a person’s character based off of their race, gender or physical appearance. It has been generally accepted that all people have implicit bias, however research from a Yale University Child Study Center has found evidence of implicit bias among preschool teachers. This could possibly help explain why young black students are expelled or suspended from school far more often than white students. The study also showed that black teachers recommended longer suspensions regardless of the child’s race or gender.

In the research, 132 teachers were asked to watch video clips of preschool children and to note instances of challenging behavior. The videos were filmed using actors and didn’t include any signs of trouble. However, eye tracking software showed that the teachers spent more time looking at black children than white children. In particular, they spent considerably more time watching black boys. This study suggests that some preschool teachers expect trouble from certain students based on their race and gender, and if this is the case, additional training for these teachers would be needed to rectify these assumptions.

The study also found that white and black teachers evaluated a child’s behavior differently depending on their race. When asked to read about an instance of misbehavior from a child with a stereotypically black name, white teachers were less likely to say that the child’s misbehavior had been severe. This could suggest that white teachers hold black preschoolers to a lower standard; they expect misbehavior from black children and so acting out is not as much of an issue for them.

It’s unlikely that preschool teachers are intentionally prejudiced against certain students. However, with black preschoolers almost 3.6 times more likely to be suspended than white children, it seems implicit bias could be shaping teachers’ attitudes towards young children.

“The Negro Artist and The Racial Mountain”

When reading “The Negro Artist and The Racial Mountain” I began to think about my high school experience. Some of the  Black students would say that another Black student is “talking white” or “sounds white”, when that person spoke with proper grammar rather than slang and/or cursing. They would also comment on how certain white people were “acting Black”.  When one student was considered to be “acting Black” they would be goofing off, disruptive, disobedient, and talking inappropriately. These statements make blackness sound  less than, and uneducated, while white is “unconsciously a symbol of all the virtues” (Racial Mountain). This is similar to the “Negro poet” wanting “to be  white” (Racial Mountain).

White is considered to be the standard and what Blacks must strive to be. The” white man does things”(Racial Mountain) well and  Black people are supposed to follow his example.

The internalization of negative stereotypes is very prevalent in the Black community. Some people actually believe that, “talking white” is better and means that you are educated, while in actuality they are speaking like how any person speaks their language. Some people in the Black community hold on to these  stereotypes about themselves which just perpetuates the negativity. They may believe that since they can never be white they will never be good enough. These views can effect them in different aspects of their lives i.e. school, and jobs. They may give up because they know that they cannot reach the white standard, which can cause other problems in their life as well.