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Manhattan Institute

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Notable & Quotable: ‘Beckys’

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Notable & Quotable: ‘Beckys’

The Wall Street Journal April 6, 2019
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Editor's note: The following appeared in The Wall Street Journal's Notable & Quotable

‘Critical Becky Studies: Critical Explorations of Gender, Race, and the Pedagogies of Whiteness.’

Max Eden writing for City Journal, April 5

This weekend, more than 14,000 academics will gather in Toronto to share their research for the American Educational Research Association’s annual conference. . . . Perhaps the most remarkable symposium analyzes fanfiction about “Beckys.” “Becky” is a slur for “a stereotypical basic white girl; obsessed with Starbucks, Ugg boots, and trying to have a bigger butt.” The panel, titled, “Critical Becky Studies: Critical Explorations of Gender, Race, and the Pedagogies of Whiteness,” includes a paper called “Becky Book Club: White Racial Bonding in the Living Room,” which explores the “more insidious workings” of book clubs “laced with white supremacy and surveillance.” Another essay, “Border Becky: Exploring White Women’s Emotionality, Ignorance, Investment in Whiteness,” examines white women who find themselves “at the border between choosing to be a race traitor and repledging their allegiance to white supremacy.”

This piece originally appeared in The Wall Street Journal

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Max Eden is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and author of a new report, Safe and Orderly Schools: Updated Guidance on School Discipline. Follow him on Twitter here.

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