Brows furrowed, eyes focused, I was busy concentrating on my latest artistic masterpiece. As my hands carefully guided the acrylic paint across the canvas with the stroke of a brush, I became aware of a classmate standing nearby silently contemplating my subject. I paused and gave him a quizzical look. After all, my ninth grade art class was in full swing and we were supposed to be focused on our own work. Was there something that I could help him with? As if reading my mind, he said, "Why do you always paint black people?"
I grew up with my mother telling me often that I was named after Dr. Maya Angelou, the great writer and poet laureate who died today at the age of 86. As the story goes, the year was 1970 and my mother was reading I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings while I was in the womb. As she finished the book, she swore to herself that if she had a girl she would name her after Maya Angelou because she wanted her daughter to have the author’s same fiercely independent spirit.
A new paper by Avidit Acharya, Matthew Blackwell, and Maya Sen has discovered that the proportion of enslaved residents in 1860 — 153 years ago — predicts race-related beliefs today.
Gender job segregation is the practice of filling certain occupations with mostly male or mostly female workers. Today, 40 percent of women work in jobs that are three-fourths female or more and 45 percent of men work in jobs that are more than three-fourths male. Job segregation is the main cause of the wage gap between men and women because jobs that employ women pay somewhere between 5-19 percent less than ones that employ men.
In a 2007 national survey, 40% of children adopted by Americans, both domestically and internationally, were of a different race than their adoptive parents (source). Transracial adoptions are very common. But who adopts who? If you ask Google Images, white families adopt non-white children. Six of the images below appear to feature white parents with children of color:
One of our Pinterest boards collects images that reveal that men are the “neutral” sex in contemporary Western cultures. This means that (1) the image that pops up in our minds when we say “person” or “human” or “worker” is usually implicitly male, (2) non-sexed representations of people are usually assumed to be male (e.g., cartoon animals appear female to us unless we slap on eyelashes and lipstick), (3) items for sale often get marketed as either “item” or “women’s item” (e.g., “deodorant” and “women’s deodorant”), and (4) men and male bodies get to stand in for humanity (e.g., in scientific research).
This week the Supreme Court heard arguments in cases related to marriage equality. The two cases separately examine Proposition 8 and the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA)-- laws that prevent the LGBT community from freely marrying. As this topic gained national attention this week experts offer their opinion on whether or not everyone should have the right to marry.