Taking Back the Center
Essay title: Taking Back the Center
вЂњTaking Back the CenterвЂќ by Grillo and Wildman, points out the natural advantages of white dominant society. вЂњThe white, male, heterosexual societal norm is privileged in such a way that its privilege is rendered invisibleвЂќ. (Grillo 337) Since, whiteness is accepted as the norm or privileged group, problems of minority groups are ignored and push to the backburner. Those in the dominant priviledged group get to enjoy the many benefits such as having their voices heard in society. On the other hand, minority groups in U.S society are deprived of the opportunity to let their problems be known to society.
Grillo and Wildman write about how the privileged dominant white groups are the вЂњspeakersвЂќ rather than the вЂњlistenerвЂќ. The dominate group often times are ignorant to the issues of minority relations since their status as the privileged group makes them feel superior to the rest of the population. The widely accepted ideal of whiteness as the norm creates exclusiveness within the group, where only the issues of relevance amongst the group are addressed. Minorities are left with very limited resources as U.S society as a whole is still a white dominated society in terms of numbers and accepted ideology of white dominance.
Grillo and Wildman writes that even when minorities are given a forum for discussion on race, the dominate majority group often will try to take back the focus of their own agendas. Grillo calls this, вЂњstealing the center.вЂќ Grillo and Wildman give examples in the past where such events have happened. A meeting of Law Society was held, where three minority scholars were invited to speak on how to diversify universities. вЂњMany people of color were in attendance, yet many whites choose not to attendвЂќ. (Grillo 337) Whites did not want the out-group to be perceived as a part of the privileged group, therefore they did not attend as to exercise their right as the вЂњprivileged.вЂќ
Other tactics in which the dominant group attempts to steal back the center includes using Guerilla tactics. During a talk on the integration of multicultural materials into a university core curriculum, a white man got up from the front row and walked noisily to the back of the room. He paced around the room in a distracting fashion and then returned to his seat. During the questioning session he was the first to rise up, leaping to his feet and proceeded to ask a lengthy, rambling question about how multicultural materials could be added to the university curriculum without disturbing the вЂњcanon,вЂќ вЂ“ exact subject of the talk which he did not listen to. (Grillo 338) Canon means the core curriculum of dominant society.
Apparently, he became outraged with the idea of multicultural integration of university curriculum the moment the proposal was raised by the speaker. He felt as if his right to study material that is central and relevant to his own self as a privileged individual was being infringed upon. He has adopted the thinking that the вЂњcanonвЂќ curriculum is of most importance;