Not a Monolith: Race and Viewpoint Diversity Resource Guide
“When we reject the single story, when we realize there is never a single story about any place, we regain a kind of paradise.” - Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
This resource list contains HxA blog posts, podcast episodes, event recordings, and tools on the value of having a diversity of perspectives within groups that are often portrayed as having a singular worldview. Materials in this guide focus on the ways in which issues of race and identity are taught, studied, and discussed within institutions of higher learning and in the larger public discourse.
Given the ongoing focus on structural racism, the resulting anti-racism movements, and the responses to those movements, it is critical to highlight the multitude of viewpoints on these issues. It is only with a commitment to engaging with diverse viewpoints and disagreeing constructively that we can cultivate a richer educational experience, especially with issues as complex and sensitive as race and identity.
We encourage you to use these materials in your classrooms and on your campuses to deepen understanding and spark meaningful conversations about race and identity.
- Critical Questions about the Relationship Between Viewpoint Diversity and Other Aspects of Diversity. This plenary panel from HxA’s 2019 conference explores views about whether viewpoint diversity on campus undermines or supports other diversity-related goals. It features panelists Tony Banout, Senior Vice President, Interfaith Youth Core, Jennifer Collins, Bloomquist Associate Provost for Faculty Development and Dean of the Social Sciences, Gettysburg College, Taffye Benson Clayton, Vice President and Associate Provost, Office of Inclusion & Diversity, Auburn University, and Karith Foster, CEO & Founder, F.R.A.M.E.
- Fighting Racism Without Shaming. Irshad Manji, Heterodox Academy Advisory Council member and author of “Don’t Label Me,” discusses her book, as well as how we should be thinking about diversity, identity, and creating cultures that value having difficult yet constructive conversations.
- A Conversation with John McWhorter – Viewpoint Diversity among Black Intellectuals. John McWhorter speaks about viewpoint diversity among Black intellectuals, the state of open inquiry in higher education today, and his new book: “The Elect.”
- A Critique of Anti-Racism in Rhetoric and Composition. Erec Smith, HxA member and Associate Professor of Rhetoric at York College of Pennsylvania, presents on his book, “A Critique of Anti-racism in Rhetoric and Composition: The Semblance of Empowerment,” and speaks to what he sees as the problems of many anti-racist approaches to teaching and scholarship. He then explores empowerment theory and collaborative pedagogy as solutions to these problems.
- Resistance as Sacrifice: Towards an Ascetic Antiracism, by Musa al-Gharbi
- On the Authority of Experience in Black Thought, by Randall Kennedy
- Why Ibram Kendi's Anti-Racism is So Flawed, by Jeffrey Aaron Snyder
- How Critics of Intersectionality (Often) Miss the Point, by Ian Storey
- To be Sensible About Race is Not "Blaming the Victim", by John McWhorter
- Education, Social Elites, and Uneven Racial Progress, by Musa al-Gharbi
- Critical Theory or Common Humanity? The Case for a Liberal Approach to Social Studies Education? by Sam Merrick and Samantha Hedges
- Arguments for and Against Capitalism in the Black Intellectual Tradition, by Fabio Rojas
- The Importance of Intrapersonal Empowerment in American Race Relations, by Erec Smith
- “Splitting” and Identity Politics, by Andrew Hartz
- A Rhetoric of Common Values, by Erec Smith
- ‘Viewpoint Diversity’ is About Much More than Politics, by Musa al-Gharbi
- Unifying and Divisive Identities – Lucia Martinez Valdivia. Lucia Martinez Valdivia, associate professor of English and Humanities at Reed College, discusses the limited range of identities typically addressed in higher education and how identity can unify students on a college campus.
- The Ups and Downs of Multiculturalism – Jessica Good. Jessica Good is a social psychologist at Davidson College. Her research focuses on stereotyping and discrimination, and in this episode she discusses multiculturalism, a contentious topic in the political world and academia.
- Sociology of Activism – Fabio Rojas. Fabio Rojas is a professor of sociology at Indiana University at Bloomington. He’s the author of From Black Power to Black Studies: How a Radical Social Movement Became an Academic Discipline and Theory for the Working Sociologist published by Columbia University Press.
- Becoming Culturally Intelligent – Maria Dixon Hall. Maria Dixon Hall manages the Campus Cultural Intelligence program at Southern Methodist University. She has a background in multiple disciplines, having earned a masters of divinity, a masters of theology, and a PhD in Organizational Communication and Religion. Her work in cultural intelligence differs from the typical diversity training that’s done on college campuses.
- White Identity Politics – Ashley Jardina. Ashley Jardina is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Duke University. Her research explores the nature of racial attitudes, the development of group identities, and the way in which these factors influence political preferences and behavior. She is primarily interested in how Americans are responding to increasing diversity, and her current project explores the conditions under which white racial identification and white consciousness among white Americans is a salient and significant predictor of policies, candidates, and attitudes toward racial and ethnic groups.
- Whiteshift: Populism, Immigration, and the Future of White Majorities – Eric Kaufmann. Eric Kaufmann is a professor of politics at Birkbeck College, University of London. He is the author of Whiteshift: Populism, Immigration, and the Future of White Majorities, which explore the cultural and ethnic transformation of English-speaking nations, especially the United States, and how that has threatened many citizens who have a white identity.
- Anti-Christian Bias and Race Relations – George Yancey. Sociologist and HxA founding member George Yancey has published numerous books on anti-Christian bias within the academy and has also written about multiracial churches and a “mutual responsibility model” for addressing structural racism.
- Conventional Wisdom about Asian Americans – Arthur Sakamoto. Arthur Sakamoto, sociologist at Texas A&M, discusses three myths about Asian Americans.
- Politics and Protest – John McWhorter. John McWhorter, Associate Professor of English and comparative literature at Columbia University and Contributing Writer at The Atlantic, discusses several topics, including political theater, use of the term “white supremacy,” and his personal experiences as a black professor.
- Multiculturalism and Diversity – Rick Shweder. Rick Shweder, cultural anthropologist at University of Chicago’s Department of Comparative Human Development, is author and editor of numerous books including Thinking Through Cultures: Expeditions in Cultural Psychology and Why Do Men Barbecue? Recipes for Cultural Psychology. His recent research examines the scopes and limits of pluralism, the tension between diversity and equality, and the multicultural challenge in Western liberal democracies.
Tools and Resources
- Discussion Guide: “Don’t Label Me” – In “Don’t Label Me,” Irshad Manji explores some of the hottest topics in America today — diversity, antiracism, and inclusion — and provides guidance on how to create cultures that value moral courage, viewpoint diversity, and seeking mutual understanding. This discussion guide is intended to spark constructive conversation and critical thinking about the book, its arguments and their relevance, and the state of our communities, campuses, and country.
- Suggested Readings on Racism and Reform – Seven of our Advisory Council Members – Xavier de Souza Briggs, Robby George, Irshad Manji, Eboo Patel, Judith Shapiro, Nadine Strossen, and Cornel West – provided us with suggested readings on race and reform. This list contains books, articles, and videos that can help students and educators better understand this current moment and the possibilities for change about race, racism, policing and the criminal justice system, and the everyday experiences of African Americans.
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