IAS faculty member Charlie Collins, along with IAS alumni Jeanne Macbeth, Allison R. Morgan, andTaylor M. Kenney, is co-author of a new article in the Journal of Community Psychology titled: "Disrupting White racial dominance: How White antiracists challenge the racial status quo in interpersonal relationships."
As White activists are growing the racial justice movement, their antiracism frequently disrupts the racial hierarchy, which features whiteness in a dominant role, especially in interpersonal relationships. We investigate how White antiracists disrupt whiteness in interpersonal relationships. We interviewed 16 White antiracists who had experienced significant relationship distance due to their antiracism. We conducted thematic analyses to understand the conflicts that emerged between antiracists and their White counterparts as activists challenged White racial dominance. Antiracists disrupted whiteness by exercising social power to punish racist offenders. In response, their White counterparts resisted these challenges by exerting their instruments of power to sanction antiracists. The conflict with White people led antiracists to build greater personal and social capacity for antiracist activism. This study illustrates how conflicts can emerge during social change efforts even at the microlevel as parties exercise power to contest or support the status quo.