SAGE Journal Articles

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SAGE Journal User Guide

Article 1: Owen, D. S. (2007). Towards a critical theory of whiteness. Philosophy Social Criticism, 33(2), 203-222.

Summary: This article argues that a critical theory of whiteness is necessary, though not sufficient, to the formulation of an adequate explanatory account of the mechanisms of racial oppression in the modern world. In order to explain how whiteness underwrites systems of racial oppression and how it is reproduced, the central functional properties of whiteness are identified.

Questions to consider:

  1. How is whiteness a structuring property of racialized social systems?
  2. How does understanding whiteness call us to make changes in our multicultural thinking?
  3. Why is it necessary to think critically about whiteness?


Article 2: Ahmed, S. (2007). A phenomenology of whiteness. Feminist Theory, 8(2), 149-168.

Summary: The paper suggests that we can usefully approach whiteness through the lens of phenomenology. It considers how whiteness functions as a habit, even a bad habit, which becomes a background to social action. Additionally, it draws on experiences of inhabiting a white world as a non-white body, and explores how whiteness becomes worldly through the noticeability of the arrival of some bodies more than others

Questions to consider:

  1. How does whiteness function as a habit, which becomes a background to social action?
  2. How does the phenomenology of whiteness impact social structures?