These White Fragility quotes will interest those looking to discuss racism in America.
White Fragility is a book by antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo with a foreword by Michael Eric Dyson.
The book was published by Beacon Press and is just short of two hundred pages long.
The book is written from the viewpoint that many white people do not want to discuss racism due to anger, fear, or guilt.
DiAngelo believes that instead, white people put up defensive moves when the topic of racism is brought up to avoid discussing the issue.
DiAngelo discusses that anytime a person operates out of fear or anger, it prevents a meaningful discussion of tough topics such as racism.
To learn more about DiAngelo’s viewpoints, read these White Fragility Quotes.
White Fragility Quotes About Racism
These quotes give you a quick glimpse into Robin DiAngelo’s thoughts and where she believes white people need to improve.
1. “Racism is a structure, not an event.” — Robin DiAngelo
2. “Claiming that the past was socially better than the present is also a hallmark of white supremacy.” — Robin DiAngelo
3. “It would be revolutionary if we could receive, reflect, and work to change the behavior.” — Robin DiAngelo
4. “Authentic antiracism is rarely comfortable. Discomfort is key to my growth and thus desirable.” — Robin DiAngelo
5. “I am often asked if I think the younger generation is less racist. No, I don’t.” — Robin DiAngelo
6. “All systems of oppression are adaptive; they can withstand and adjust to challenges and still maintain inequality.” — Robin DiAngelo
7. “The messages circulate 24-7 and have little or nothing to do with intentions, awareness, or agreement.” — Robin DiAngelo
8. “It is white people’s responsibility to be less fragile; people of color don’t need to twist themselves into knots trying to navigate us as painlessly as possible.” — Robin DiAngelo
9. “The simplistic idea that racism is limited to individual intentional acts committed by unkind people is at the root of virtually all white defensiveness on this topic.” — Robin DiAngelo
10. “The key to moving forward is what we do with our discomfort. We can use it as a door out—blame the messenger and disregard the message.” — Robin DiAngelo
You will also enjoy our article on anti-racism quotes.
White Fragility Quotes Showing Robin DiAngelo’s Perspective
The book is written to share Robin’s unique perspective on racism and the steps white people can take to change.
11. “White progressives do indeed uphold and perpetrate racism, but our defensiveness and certitude make it virtually impossible to explain to us how we do so.” — Robin DiAngelo
12. “Not one person who loved me, guided me or taught me ever conveyed that segregation deprived me of anything of value.” — Robin DiAngelo
13. “Pause for a moment and consider the profundity of this message: we are taught that we lose nothing of value through racial segregation.” — Robin DiAngelo
14. “While speaking up against these explicitly racist actions is critical, we must also be careful not to use them to keep ourselves on the “good” side of a false binary.” — Robin DiAngelo
15. “Today, we have a cultural norm that insists we hide our racism from people of color and deny it among ourselves, but not that we actually challenge it. In fact, we are socially penalized for challenging racism.” — Robin DiAngelo
16. “If privilege is defined as a legitimization of one’s entitlement to resources, it can also be defined as permission to escape or avoid any challenges to this entitlement.” — Robin DiAngelo
17. “Whiteness, like race, may not be true—it’s not a biologically heritable characteristic that has roots in physiological structures or in genes or chromosomes. But it is real, in the sense that societies and rights and goods and resources and privileges have been built on its foundation.” — Robin DiAngelo
More White Fragility Quotes
You can read through these quotes and see where you fall with your own perspective.
18. “You asked me here to help see your racism, but by god, I’d better not actually help you see your racism.” — Robin DiAngelo
19. “One of the greatest social fears for a white person is being told that something that we have said or done is racially problematic.” — Robin DiAngelo
20. “People of color may also hold prejudices and discriminate against white people, but they lack the social and institutional power that transforms their prejudice and discrimination into racism; the impact of their prejudice on whites is temporary and contextual.” — Robin DiAngelo
21. “For those of us who work to raise the racial consciousness of whites, simply getting whites to acknowledge that our race gives us advantages is a major effort. The defensiveness, denial, and resistance are deep.” — Robin DiAngelo
22. “We do have [prejudice], and people of color already know we have them; our efforts to prove otherwise are not convincing.” — Robin DiAngelo
23. “White fragility functions as a form of bullying; I am going to make it so miserable for you to confront me—no matter how diplomatically you try to do so—that you will simply back off, give up, and never raise the issue again.” — Robin DiAngelo
24. “While implicit bias is always at play because all humans have bias, inequity can occur simply through homogeneity; if I am not aware of the barriers you face, then I won’t see them, much less be motivated to remove them.” — Robin DiAngelo
25. “If I believe that only bad people are racist, I will feel hurt, offended, and shamed when an unaware racist assumption of mine is pointed out.” — Robin DiAngelo
What Does the Book White Fragility Seek to Accomplish?
White Fragility was written to get white people to engage in cross-racial dialogue.
DiAngelo believes that argumentation and silence protect racial inequality, so she gives her viewpoint on how to engage more constructively.
Share these White Fragility quotes with your friends looking to discuss the topic of racism in America, and post any comments about the book in the comment section below.