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Reflection on Annette Bickford’s Guest Lecture

I found Annette Bickford’s guest lecture extremely interesting, especially her discussion of liberal humanism and how it protects institutions using the example of the multicultural classroom. Specifically, she describes how the multicultural classroom is a site that makes racism worse, as the brief cultural celebrations give an allusion that everything is okay, but in reality reinforces a white standard. I think that this logic can extend to other inherently racial states. For example, what does it mean to “give a seat at the table” in corporate environments? What does it mean when you put Black and Brown people in executive positions of large corporations that have histories of exploiting laborers? If capitalism (and other racialized sites) do not become ethical solely by representation, why do we, as a society, continue to push for it? If not diversifying the place, what is the alternative? The Bickford discussion left me with numerous questions on how we should think about making space for people, both what it truly means and its implications in upholding the current system.

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