While another wrote: "'The fact that he picked Yewande, that says a lot' did anyone else click the microaggression
and, I think somewhat that social media is to blame," Titania McGrath coolly answered, "The phrase 'walking on eggshells' is a microaggression
Its adherents and defenders still use much of the language of dignity, as when writer Regina Rini describes the goal of microaggression
reporting as "a culture in which no one is denied full moral recognition." This sounds like dignity culture, except that the implication is that even minor and unintentional slights deny people full moral recognition.
Rather than attribute racial microaggression
to White supremacy, White privilege or racist attitudes, research indicates that Whites tend to explain them as being simple misunderstandings (Sue et al, 2008).
Another area in which the push for "diversity" inhibits learning is the charge that Mac Donald calls "the microaggression
farce." This is when, as Mac Donald explains it, students assert that they have been "victimized ...
Aligned with Roberts's (1993) description of censure of those of subordinated masculinity, differing standards for emotional expression at work discourage direct confrontation of ambiguous racial discrimination (e.g., microaggression
What will you do when a student complains that another's free speech was actually a microaggression
or hate speech?
That being said, there's one legal microaggression
that's become endemic.
When people make dismissive or ignorant comments about parts of my identity, they're committing a microaggression
. Racial microaggressions
are defined as "brief and commonplace daily, verbal, behavioral, or environmental indignities, whether intentional or unintentional, that communicate hostile, derogatory, or negative racial slights and insults toward people of color." (1) Because microaggressions
are smaller-scale than what we envision as outright racism, we don't recognize how these instances of invalidation actually lead to detrimental health effects.
For example, at the recent American Psychiatric Association meeting in New York City, I frequently heard my colleagues talking about being "traumatized" over a microinsult or a microaggression
. Although these individuals suggested that they were so fragile and vulnerable that stressful events caused them to develop posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), I seriously doubted it.
For the Hmong American research participant, being able to name her experiences as racial spotlighting - a racial microaggression
- was important.