The Outsider Looks In: Constructing Knowledge About American Collegiate Racism

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Qualitative sociology
This study tackles one of the most complex and intriguing issues in contemporary society, namely, the phenomenon of racism. Instead of examining the structural dimensions of racism, it focuses on the interpersonal “everyday racism” that occurs among students. Using the University of Minnesota as a case study, the study employs qualitative research methods to offer new perspectives on everyday racism as perceived through the eyes of a Black foreign female student. Popular portrayals of the midwestern United States present a relatively liberal milieu where racism only subtly affects social relations, and where there is “zero tolerance” for the politics of exclusion. However, the findings of this study illustrate that everyday racism is alive and well in the collegiate environment. Epistemological issues are elaborated, arguing for the position of an interpretive and reflexive rather than a positivist approach to social research.
Tamale, S. R. (1996). The outsider looks in: Constructing knowledge about American collegiate racism. Qualitative sociology, 19(4), 471-495.