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Fri Aug 9, 2019, 08:36 AM

Racism harms black people most. It's time to recognise 'anti-blackness'

Even though there is a dictionary definition of anti-blackness, it hasn’t yet gained much traction. The political class does not grasp its toxicity. We’re currently in the middle of the UN International Decade for People of African Descent, so it is an appropriate time for anti-blackness to be classified separately from racism and given its own prominence. The one-size-fits-all approach to tackling racism leaves undersupported the racial group which suffers the most brutality, hatred and discrimination. Furthermore, in white-dominant societies, blackness has come to be a synonym for crime, laziness, poverty and low intelligence.

A key step in bringing anti-blackness to the forefront is by developing a working definition. This could cover caricatures, stereotypes, disparagement, the perception of black populated countries and the trivialisation of transatlantic slavery. As a precursor, there needs to be buy-in from governments, regional bodies, international organisations, academia and the global black civil society.

Ultimately, it is crucial to call out the most toxic brand of racism. We need to sear anti-blackness into our collective consciousness, so as to put an end to the mistakes of the past and the present, which have brought so much misery to so many people.


Certainly in the West the complexity of the historical relationship is completely different that with other races and this does bring with it the need for a more nuanced approach to anti racism in this context

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