Author: Brianna Forgione

Racism in Day to Day Occurrences

Throughout today’s society, racism is predominant in various culture.

On 9/6 we viewed a Ted Talk on culture. This Ted Talk stood out to me because the speaker, who is from Nigeria, discussed how she had a house boy growing up and throughout her life, the speaker was told on multiple occasions, that their house boy was poor. The speaker grew up believing that her house boy was uncultured and him and his family were incapable of basic life function. The speaker then visited where her house boy lives and was surprised to see that her house boys brother weaved a basket by hand. She was surprised to see this because she assumed her whole life that her house boys worth was based solely off of money and that poor people were incapable of most things. Later on in the talk the speaker shares an experience of when the roles were reversed. The speaker talks about when she attended college and had an American roommate. Her american roommate told the speaker she was shocked that her English was so good but was surprised when the speaker responded by saying English is the first language in Nigeria. Her roommate also asked if she could teach her some tribal music but the speaker made a tasteful joke that the tribal music was a Maria Carey album.

For one out of class assignment we had to read the introduction of Medical Apartheid by Harriet A. Washington. One part of this novel that stood out to me and relates to culture was the discussion of African American personal and family stories of abuse rarely surfaced and were discussed  in medical literature and popular literature. Washington states, “The experimental suffering  of black Americans has taken many forms: fear, profound deception, psychological trauma, pain, injection with deadly agents, disfigurement, crippling, chronic illness, undignified display, intractable pain, stolen fertility and death” (Pg. 9). Although the suffering of black Americans is tragic in many forms, it goes undiscovered throughout history due to the lack of documentation of medical practitioners. The information was “downplayed” and seen as therapy.