Blog Posts

Hello Bias My Old Friend

By Debby Irving | December 9, 2014

    A few days ago, at my exhibit table at the annual METCO Director’s Conference, my bias showed up unexpectedly. As conference goers came and went, I sat, sipping my coffee, interacting in the friendly, unguarded way I love most. About thirty people had come and gone from my table when suddenly, I noticed … Read more

Tell Me What To Do!

By Debby Irving | December 3, 2014

These are the five words I most hear from white people. Once the embeddedness of racism is understood, a sense of urgency to DO something stirs anxiety for action. And then, a while later, the whole problem feels too big, leading to something like, "But really, what can one person do?"  Linked here is a TED … Read more

A Thanksgiving Truth Telling Challenge

By Debby Irving | November 20, 2014

For me, Thanksgiving has always been a day of family, food, and games in front of the fire. When I was younger, the holiday included colorful tales of the Pilgrim’s brave Atlantic crossing, brutal first winter, and harmonious celebratory feast with ‘The Indians.’ No one challenged the peaceful narrative in my segregated, comfortable, white world … Read more

White Privilege Explained In 3 Easy (ish) Steps

By Debby Irving | October 24, 2014

  Though people dumped on Bill O’Reilly for not understanding white privilege, the truth is most white people don’t understand it. I know I didn’t — until it was thoroughly explained to me in a full semester graduate school course. Here’s a short, info-packed explanation. 1) Examine The Word Privilege common misperception: privilege = rich … Read more

Overdue Update

By Debby Irving | October 15, 2014

  Greetings from across the months!  I can't believe my last post was May 18th. Actually, maybe I can. In contrast to the step-by-step marketing and blogging plan I'd expected to dutifully follow over the past months, a series of unexpected invitations have drawn me into new territory. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the … Read more

Upcoming Dates & Other Cool Stuff

By Debby Irving | May 18, 2014

Hoping to connect with you at one of these upcoming events! Thursday, May 22nd @ 6pm at Boston’s Wheelock College Hosted by the National Center for Race Amity, this is a gathering for people who've read the book and want to discuss it in a racially mixed group. For this event, I'll focus on the impact … Read more

Including White Men

By Debby Irving | April 4, 2014

    Despite the above image, I swear this isn’t a clever lead-in to a sarcastic piece about white men. Including White men is my reflection on how hard I have to work sometimes to avoid re-installing the divisive, white supremacist mindset by stereotyping, dehumanizing, and vilifying any group – including white, straight, Christian, able-bodied … Read more

The Cincinnati Mystery and Other News

By Debby Irving | March 14, 2014

    A Few Upcoming Events and One Mystery      March 26th -29th ~ The White Privilege Conference ~ Madison, WI If you’re at the conference please come visit my book table where I’ll be offering special WPC discount rates. Poet Norma Johnson will be joining me to create an engaging space to talk about … Read more

Seeing Institutional Racism: Where IS it?

By Debby Irving | February 23, 2014

What could racism possibly have to do with ballet, football, or a trip to Yosemite? This one short essay from the archives of Barbara Beckwith helps us see how the racial divide persists in the most unexpected of ways. For ongoing learning, Barbara has a great website and two fabulous essay collections, What Was I Thinking? (Volumes … Read more

Why the Samuel Jackson Mix-Up Matters

By Debby Irving | February 14, 2014

For those of you who didn't see this painful on-air blunder, watch here to see KTLA entertainment reporter Sam Rubin mistake Samuel L. Jackson for Laurence Fishburne. I wouldn't have understood the significance of this event prior to Waking Up White so I thought I'd share this chapter in case some other white people out there … Read more

Showing Up

By Debby Irving | February 9, 2014

    By Guest Blogger Patricia Wild   I met Patricia Wild on the heels of my book launch. Two things struck me. Firstly, she's written a book (Way Opens: A Spiritual Journey) that, like mine, chronicles a journey in and around whiteness and "the spiritual underpinnings of social justice." How did I miss it … Read more

Interview with Dr. Eddie Moore, Jr.

By Debby Irving | January 1, 2014

Happy New Year one and all. Just before unplugging for the holiday break, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Eddie Moore, Jr. by phone. I found his answers eye opening and hope you will too. (Bio at end of interview.) Debby: How did a black man headed towards a career as an NFL coach end up in a career … Read more