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Portraits of White Racism
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Book description

First published in 1977, Portraits of White Racism advanced a distinctively sociological theory of racism. Based on five case histories, it critically assessed the prevailing social-psychological paradigm that equated racism with prejudice and provided an alternative interpretation. Racism, the book argued, could be understood as a culturally sanctioned strategy for defending social advantage based on race; it was not simply the product of psychological abnormalities. In this revised edition the theoretical perspective is updated, taking into account recent theorising in the sociology of racism.


"Timely, provocative, and challenging." The Reader's Catalog Bulletin

"...Wellman provides insight on how the racial ideas of scholars filter into meanings of race for individual Americans....Wellman's exploration of white racism dramatically confirms the almost unconscious nature of racism....Wellman shows that race is a fundamental component of American national identity....Racism, as Wellman elucidates in his analysis, has its roots in the structure of the society, not in the separate psyches of flawed and prejudiced individuals." Debra Van Ausdale, Journal of American Ethnic History

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