In the beginning of the term we read Takaki, R. (1993). A different mirror: A history of multicultural America. New York, NY: This book illustrated the Narrative of American history and how it has influenced our culture and society. Master Narrative is how society, social media, and news have constructed our perspective of how we see ourselves and how we fit into American history. My perspective has changed on how American became to be and the reality of how people of color were treated during the discovery of America. The video “The Power of Illusion” influenced my perspective of how populations and races were developed and taught in our education system inaccurately. Both these readings illustrated that people were treated inhuman in our early history because of the color of their skin or the way they looked.
“Power of Illusion” and Takaki shed light on our American heroes and presidents that society portrayed as fighting for equal rights and ending slavery. It opened my eyes to the great length American went to be a civilized country and behind closed doors how American heroes and presidents treated people of color. These resonated with me because for the first time in my life I felt like the American dream was at the cost of other people suffering. In the beginning of the class I was scared to talk about race or racism because I am white. These reading made me feel like white Americans have been the reason people of color and Indians suffered. I didn’t want to say the wrong this or offend someone, so I never brought it up.
This class has taught me to that it is easy to not say anything but that’s how social injustice and racism continue. I now challenge what society has taught me and has subconsciously I have learned. As I reflect on this class I realize I have learned about the history of race and how it has been society constructed. It has allowed me to look in mirror and question how I have contributed to social justice. I look at my family and friends differently and see ways that contribute to racism and sexism and challenge their thoughts and behaviors. I have grown as an individual through this class and have expanded my understanding of who I am.
After learning about the history of American and Race the class moved to learning about how we move forward in creating diversity and multicultural change. I know have the knowledge and tools to create diversity at the individual, group and institutional level. I understand the impact that multicultural change can have on student’s educational experience. I have the tools to be a participant and leader in multicultural change. I know look around at my racial climate and understand how my understanding of race has been shaped. I want to continue to create multicultural change in my personal and professional life. As a potential future staff member at a university I want to work together to build relationships with students and staff to prevent multicultural issues in higher education. I want to continue to be aware of multicultural issues because they will continue to grow and change. I am excited as a student affair professional to be a part of the student’s development and influence the outcome of a student’s experience. I reflect on where I started in this class on my understanding of race and multicultural issues and I am proud of how far I come. This project has allowed me to share my story among my classmates and learn about the experiences and stories of them. We might have all came from different backgrounds and cultures, but we have all come together to stand for social justice.
Pope, R. L., Reynolds, A. L., & Mueller, J. A. (2014). Creating multicultural change on campus. Retrieved from https://ebookcentral.proquest.com
Takaki, R. (1993). A different mirror: A history of multicultural America. New York, NY: Back Bay Books.
Herbes-Sommers, C. Cheng, J. Adelman, L. Smith, L. Strain, T. (Director). (2003). Race – The Power of an Illusion