Monthly Archive: July 2011

Jul 21 2011

Same planet, different worlds

“Intersectionality” is a word that is new to my lexicon – a lexicon that constantly expands as I delve deeper into the anti-racist and feminist literature. The word intersectionality refers to (so far as I can tell) the way in which identical variations in one variable can elicit a differential result based on a third …

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Jul 20 2011

The entrenchment of disparity

I spent a great deal of time last week talking about disparities – differences in access and achievement – that exist along sex or racial lines. Wednesday’s post looked explicitly at a topic that is dear to my heart: education. Education is, in my opinion, the key to societal progress. It is not simply enough …

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Jul 19 2011

Health care; we still live in the world

So as you may have deduced from yesterday’s marathon post, I am back from my trip. While I spent the first week in sunny and beautiful Amsterdam, I spent the second week in sunnier Toronto – my old home. This trip wasn’t all pleasure though; in fact, I was traveling for business. I don’t talk …

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Jul 18 2011

A warning about increasing diversity

Regular readers will probably have noticed that my post this morning was a bit more verbose than they’re used to seeing. In the interest of not making these things too ponderous (and also in the interest of serving my own short attention span) I try to cap blog posts around 1,000 words. Sometimes the ‘Monday …

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Jul 18 2011

Why do we want diversity?

A copy of this post appears at Phil Ferguson’s Skeptic Money blog. The skeptic/atheist movement is an interesting case study in group dynamics. It is a group that is subject to all the same vices and cognitive blindnesses that plague all human beings: self-centredness, arrogance, in-group bias, lack of self-awareness, hostility and stubbornness in the …

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Jul 15 2011

Movie Friday: Seinfeld

I spent a lot of time talking about the ways in which inequalities – particularly those that fall along racial lines – manifest themselves. I made a point of highlighting those cases where it was clear that the root of the problem was systemic rather than personal; that is, where racism could not be chalked up …

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Jul 14 2011

Today’s edition of “totally unshocking news”

I hope you’re all sitting down, because I’m about to drop a knowledge bomb on you that will completely and irrevocably shatter your view about the way the world works: 336 Share The 2011 edition of the National Journal survey of “Hill people”—that is, high-level staffers to members of Congress—revealed something we probably already knew: …

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Jul 13 2011

Disparities: Whither comest thou?

I throw around the terms ‘inequality’ and ‘disparity’ quite often when discussing issues of race and gender. Most often I am talking about differences in levels of access or achievement that are rooted in traditional prejudices relating to majority opinion of minority members, but the concept can really be used to describe any differential level …

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Jul 12 2011

Diversity makes us smarter

I often find myself drawn to discussions of ‘diversity’, which, it should be noted, is a term that can have a lot of different meanings – a diversity of meanings, if you will. Oh, you won’t? *Gulp* Sorry. When I talk about diversity, I generally refer to a non-sociological definition – one that is really …

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Jul 11 2011

This post is for Lawrence Hill

Book of Negroes in Osterpark

Regular readers here will remember my frustration and anger toward a Dutch group representing ancestors of former slaves, who threatened to burn a book by one of my favourite authors, Lawrence Hill. Not only are book burnings stupid and counterproductive (since they elevate the profile of the idea you’re attempting to destroy), but they are …

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