White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack

Causes & Communities Served Implicit Bias
Resource Types Written, Web-based
Level of Training Level 1 (Beginner)
Year of Publication Pre-2000
Length of Material 1-5 pages/slides


In "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack," Peggy McIntosh explores the concept of white privilege, which she defines as an invisible package of unearned assets that white people can count on each day but are taught to remain oblivious to. McIntosh discusses how men often deny their privilege, similar to how white people are taught not to recognize their own. Through her work in Women's Studies, she has observed the interlocking hierarchies of privilege and has created a list of everyday experiences that reflect her white privilege. These include the ability to be around people of her race most of the time, to find housing in desirable areas, to feel represented in media and culture, and to not have her financial reliability questioned due to her skin color.

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