Appletree #2 - White Privilege A Workshop for Beginners

We regret to inform you that the event 'White Privilege A Workshop for Beginners' is now fully booked. We will however make the audio recordings of the workshop available after the event.

Appletree #2 -
White Privilige
A Workshop for beginners *

A workshop on White Privilege conceived and led by artist Maria Guggenbichler as part of the programme Appletree, curated by Vincent van Velsen.

Wednesday 27 March, 16:00 – 18:00
(doors open at 15:45)
Rijksakademie Reading Room

Admission is free, but reservation is required. you can reserve your seat here.

* Although (because) they’re the inventors of white supremacy and also the experts in profiting from it, white people are also specialists in not knowing whiteness – hence ‘for beginners.’
The life-threatening (deadly) consequences of white supremacy are the daily lived reality of people of colour globally, yet they remain invisible to those who “believe themselves as white” (Ta-Nehisi Coates). Those who benefit from white racial privilege don’t see (read: un-see, read: ignore) whiteness permanently. Given the comfort which comes with it, not surprisingly white people naturalize their privilege; although unearned, it feels normal to them, as much a given as unremarkable.
In utter denial, white people demand “black labour for proof” (Patricia Schor) of systematic and everyday racism, of the real-ness and effects of white supremacy, but they also demand the time and labour of people of colour to educate them about their own whiteness. 
Audre Lorde: “Black and Third World people are expected to educate white people as to our humanity. Women are expected to educate men. Lesbians and gay men are expected to educate the heterosexual world. The oppressors maintain their position and evade their responsibility for their own actions.”
Goal of the workshop is to “return the problem of whiteness to white people” (George Yancy) and open the uncomfortable space for those with racial privilege to do the work, self-examine, educate and confront themselves with their privileged, which also always means oppressing, position. From this position, what does it mean to “take responsibility for one’s own actions?”
The workshop takes the form of a reading-listening session. It will use texts by scholar Peggy McIntosh and by writer Claudia Rankine to name the norm and understand white supremacy as systematic, as a political fiction and investment, as a technology of domination, as terror, as spatial and necro-political operation.
Confronting (white) privilege will only be possible, I believe, if we address as clearly as is possible the here and now of our conversation, of our gathering. Given the location at an art institution, it will be necessary to discuss the role of culture, its protocols and institutions, in the reproduction of white supremacy; as well as the complicity/agency for resistance of those working in the field.
The reading materials can be found here:
– Peggy McIntosh: White Privilege and Male Privilege (1988)
– Claudia Rankine: In Our Way – Racism in Creative Writing (2016)

Bio Maria Guggenbichler
Maria Guggenbichler thinks and un-thinks, laughs, dances, plays, collaborates, doubts, listens, talks, walks, organizes, works and sabotages, publishes and hides, and spoils the broth – with too many cooks, fellow strangers, and friends. Maria works in long-term and close collaborations and friendships. 
Together with Amal Alhaag, Maria initiated and ran the Side Room, a discursive platform for excentric cultural practices and intersectional thinking (2013-2016). Amal and Maria have been collaborating on many other events, programs, and pranks.
Image via Deniz Unal / do you mind; and as well via Zubeyda Muzeyyen / DJ Haram Image via Deniz Unal / do you mind; and as well via Zubeyda Muzeyyen / DJ Haram