Confronting Thanksgiving

“The killings became more and more frenzied with days of Thanksgiving feasts being held after each successful massacre. George Washington finally suggested that only one day of Thanksgiving per year be set aside instead of celebrating each and every massacre.” (Susan Bates)

This is an updated repost from last year, to continue our commitment to raise awareness about the actual origins and impact of this holiday that many of us celebrate without a second thought and to confront the mythologies that encourage us to ignore the real history of Thanksgiving:

no-thanks-no-giving2

We often think of Thanksgiving as a time of family, football, giving thanks and gorging. I used to be of this mindset until learning more about some of the actual roots of this holiday. What I learned was that Thanksgiving has little to do with an amicable meal shared between the Pilgrims and Indians. While there is a documented meal shared at one point, and this is often what is referenced, the “National Holiday” was originally a marker of the celebrations of the massive genocide of Indigenous peoples across the Eastern coast of the US. … Read more

Join us for our next Workshop!

Sunday, March 10 – Exploring the Intersection of White Privilege and Gender Oppression in the Work for Racial Justice.

10am-12:30pm, Near 12th St BART in Oakland. $35-50 sliding scale.

To apply for registration, click here.

Intersection Workshop Flier

How have our experiences of gender oppression impacted our work in challenging white supremacy? What patterns are common among people socialized as both white and female? How do they show up or limit our anti-racist work?

In this highly interactive workshop, led by members of the White Noise Collective, we will explore how internalized sexism and heterosexism influences our work for racial justice. Through dialogue, presentation, Theater of the Oppressed, analysis of media images and other experiential activities, we will collectively investigate these intersections and the frequently raised themes of cultural appropriation, passive aggressive behavior, helping professions, and the ‘white women tears’ phenomenon. We will also look at the historic and current mythologies of white women as virtuous victims that are used to justify violence against people of color and co-create creative strateges for countering them.… Read more

What’s Awesome About White Women?

Naming what sucks about white women is really easy and really satisfying. We do it a lot, especially us white women. We get to have the satisfaction of differentiating ourselves from the white female “prototype” ie. a hetero barbie who is a pretty, nice, passive, pure, covertly racist, helpless trophy and (do a really common thing that white women do) compare ourselves and think, “See we know what that is, and we are better than that”.  In our workshops we spend a lot of time naming what the white female prototype is in an effort to shift towards a radical anti-racist white female practice and away from the myth that we are all just individuals with no culture (we may not want to claim it as our culture, but it impacts us all nonetheless). After this mostly negative naming (see the White Female Culture post) we’ve asked, “What’s awesome about white women?”

This question always makes us incredibly uncomfortable.… Read more