Thesis

Unlearning bias : effects of multicultural education on racial bias

Since the power structure that enforces racial oppression has been in place since the founding of this country, and some of the greatest perpetuators of the power structure are unsuspecting white people who do not even realize that they have been indoctrinated to believe that people of other races are inferior and perpetuate oppression. One possible way to break that cycle is to enlighten young members of white society about the realities of power and oppression so they do not carry it with them into their eventual places in society, some of which will be positions of power. This case study uses interview and survey data to provide preliminary empirical evidence on whether that is actually a possibility, and finds that an exposure to an ethnic studies curriculum increases awareness of white privilege and decreases bias. Further research can be conducted regarding the outcomes of students of color given this information, the outcomes of white students in a diverse community, the social effects of such curricula, and other areas.

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