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Catching our Breath

I am going to be honest, I am very much looking forward to this week’s class to discuss the “Catching our Breath” reading, because I just did not understand it all that much.  I get that we are talking about race, but adding in the technology angle muddied things a little bit for me.  

Just to briefly point out some things that stuck out to me, is this notion of technology being a metaphor for race.  It is just another way for us to make sense of practical racism and how it can spill over into our everyday lives. One quote that particularly was “Homemade  nooses  are  upgraded  for  state-issued  firearms.  Violent  voter  intimidation

tactics are replaced with voter ID laws. Government-sanctioned redlining is succeeded by

predatory lending. Top down eugenic policies give way to reproductive technologies that

allow  consumers  to  select  “socially  desirable”  traits.”  It is quite the thought provoking illustration as to how racism can potentially be looming in plain sight.  For all of my “My Cousin Vinny” fans out there, it is kind of like the inverse of when Vinny is talking to his cousin about the prosecution’s case in terms of a playing card.  In this instance, we are seeing it from the side, where implied racism might look thin on its face, but flip it on its edge and we see a much sturdier picture of what is really happening.  

There are clear signs of disadvantage for minorities that we must not only take seriously, but also make a concerted effort to combat it.  Carceral Imagination is something that I was not familiar with before reading this, and even after the reading, I will need some clarification on it and what its meanings and purposes are.  Broadly my understanding is that the masses can think themselves to a point where it we can simply forecast certain individuals or groups that will be incarcerated or something similar. The underlying concept is not something that is new, but the specifics and how it is defined seem to be tricky for me, so I look forward to hearing our pathfinder this week in explaining it along with our always thoughtful discussions on these topics.

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