Speaker: Dr. Adia Wingfield
We were so privileged to have Dr. Adia Wingfield to speak with us. She is currently a Professor of Sociology at Washington University in St. Louis.
Dr. Wingfield spoke began her talk with myths surrounding race & racial inequality. She then shared with us some of the analyses currently being done by social scientists on the topic. For example, the data shows extensive disparities between people of color and whites in areas including life expectancy, health outcomes, employment/wages, and educational attainment.
She then outlined three main explanations that different social scientists give as to why these disparities exist: racialized social systems (Eduardo Bonilla-Silva), systemic racism (Feagin), and intersectionality (Patricia Hill Collins, Kimberle Williams Crenshaw). Though the three explanations all agree that racial inequalities are driven by social institutions or systems "built to advantage whites over people of color" they differ in their reasons for how and why these systems continue.
Examining why racial disparities exist is important to help us figure out how to address these inequalities. The main consensus is a structural change that influences the policies, laws, and rules that perpetuate racial disparities.
Image from: https://sociology.wustl.edu/people/adia-harvey-wingfield
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