Resources for Addressing Privilege

Some conflicts are related to systemic issues and years of inequalities, advantages of some over others and relate to areas of race, gender, class and more.

It’s very often the case that some kind of structural inequality is relevant to the full understanding of a seemingly interpersonal conflict.

We want to see a network where people look at privilege in an ongoing way. See Robin Diangelo’s Accountability Statement for the need for ongoing learning.

Here are some resources to explore your relationship to race, class, gender, sexualilty, neurodiversity and physical ability.

Please use them as a springboard for discussion groups in your networks.

Resources around privilege inspired by NVC

POC for NVC community calls hosted by Leonie Smith and Uma Lo, for POC NVC practitioners

Trauma-informed NVC with Decolonial lens – Meenadchi’s website

Roxy Manning’s article – How can NVC be helpful in these transformative times?

Roxy Manning’ss  Interview (45 Mins) with Shift Network- How can white people help

(Overview of video if you can’t access it as it is on facebook).

Roxy covers What white people need to know when engaging in discussions around race. She mentions the energy of white people expecting to be educated black people and how this is yet another way black bodies are used.  She speaks about the labour it takes when white people present blindspots, microaggressions and lack of education on a topic related to race.

She talks about the pain of white people finally ready to stand alongside black people, having the undeniable truth of watching George Floyd’ being killed on our screens. She mentions the pain of white people not stepping forward until it has become huge, and then even when we do, it’s often still about our education and it’s not genuine support.

Roxy’s message to well intentioned white people is to do the work, go to white allies if we are stuck, then come, as a source of support to black people, saying  ‘how can i support you?’ rather than ‘Can you meet my needs for learning’.

Roxy’s message to black people is to connect to your needs and take action to meet your needs.

She also encourages us to start looking at the systemic level, and how we are participating in the system.

She urges white folks to check our intention when intervening in discussions around race, to take care and she  notices how white voices traditionally get amplified. She recommends finding a black voice that is saying things you enjoy and repost it (on social media)

And then if you stumble and make comments that are harmful, and we all will, take the steps to do the work of  listening and repair.

Roxy Manning – Where are you from? (link to full article)

Microaggressions fall along a spectrum of simple assumptions to bias and preferential treatment, to outright injustice. The seemingly benign microaggression identified in the original question, the subtle message of not belonging, also can be the kernel of an assumption that leads to grave consequences.

Roxy Manning – You’re so articulate (link to full article)

I’ve had people say to me, “You’re so articulate!” And follow it with, “You don’t sound like a black person.” A different person started the sentence the same way, but followed it with, “I love the care you put into choosing the exact nuanced word for each concept – it’s fun to meet another person who loves language the way I do.” You can imagine how those two statements are so different for me – one stimulating anger and pain over my deep longing for me and other black people to be fully seen; the other leading to excitement about finding a kindred spirit.  When someone leads with, “You’re so articulate” I don’t know where they’re coming from. 

Facing Privilege Calls with Miki Kashtan – there is a huge resource of recording on this topic (free to access, donations welcome)

You’re not a bad person, how facing privilege can be liberating – Miki Kashtan, article

NVC and how it relates to privilege – Sarah Peyton (5 min video)

Power and Privilege – the neurobiology of status and group dynamics – Sarah Peyton (2 hour, paid webinar)

Other essential resources on race


Why I’m no longer talking to white people about race – Reni Eddo-Lodge

Me and White Supremacy – Laila Saad

How to be an anti-racist- Ibram Kendri

My grandmother’s hands – Resmaa Menakem

Web resources

White fragility – Robin Diangelo Watch this 1hr 23 min video of Robin Diangelo discussing White Fragility. At 1 hr 12.45 -18.30 (this second link should take you straight to the segment) Diangelo tells the story of some racist comments she made and how she went about repair afterwards. But do also watch the whole video.

Akala on Britain’s problem with Racsim on how racism and inequality isn’t acknowledged or talked about in Britain, on what happens with a stigmatory language, on how blackness is talked about in the mainstream, emphasizing race in negative stories but not positive stories. (June 2020)

Justice in June – A google doc which lays out a plan of learning for 10 minutes a day for a month, based on the great article: 75 Things White People Can Do For Racial Justice

Mysognist and racist? What can practitioners do when clients express abhorrent views.

On Class

Chavs – the demonization of the working class – Owen Jones

On Gender and sexuality

Read Meg John Barker for perspectives on gender and sexuality. They have online zines to read on Understanding gender, Staying with your feelings, Queer relationships, Plural selves

What resources would you like to see here? We need resources particularly on class privilege and neurodiversity and whatever else you think is missing.

Here are two other UK organisations that support conflict with awareness of NVC, power, privilege and decolonising perspectives.

Open Edge