Home » How White Supremacy Became A Part Of American Culture

How White Supremacy Became A Part Of American Culture

by NewsOne

White supremacy is an ideology asserting the inherent superiority of white people over nonwhite individuals. This deeply flawed belief system has its roots in pseudo-scientific racism, which historically justified atrocities such as slavery, imperialism, colonialism, and genocide. Today, white supremacist ideologies persist, perpetuating the myth of white racial superiority.


Education system

In the United States, historians believe the influence of white supremacy began with the education system. Research conducted by Donald Yacovone at the Monroe C. Gutman Library examined over 3,000 U.S. history textbooks dating from the 1800s to the 1980s. Yacovone discovered that many of these textbooks either omitted or downplayed the atrocities of the slave trade and other events where marginalized groups were oppressed.

For instance, in one textbook titled “Exploring the New World,” the antislavery movement was conspicuously absent. Instead, the authors justified the use of slaves to pick cotton by asking, “Who else would do the work?” Eli Whitney, known for inventing the cotton gin, was portrayed not for his significant impact on slavery but rather for his concept of interchangeable parts, which facilitated industrialization, according to Yacovone.

Per Learning For Justice, Historian Carter G. Woodson highlighted this dreadful fact in 1933, criticizing the education system for marginalizing Black students. Woodson noted that African American students were taught to admire European cultures while being taught to despise their own African heritage.

For example, he noted that the Classics Curriculum, which is based on the studies of Latin, German, and French, frequently centers on positioning Europe as the pinnacle of human achievement. Despite ancient Rome’s geographical reach into Africa and the Middle East, textbooks often depict ancient Romans as exclusively white. Even ancient Greco-Roman artifacts, originally painted in vibrant colors,…

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