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Privilege Through the Looking-Glass

2017 - 206 pages

Patricia Leavy (Ed.)

ISBN Paperback: 9789463511384 ($ 28.00)
ISBN Hardcover: 9789463511391 ($ 99.00)
ISBN E-Book: 9789463511407

Subject: Public Scholarship, Social Justice, Social Fiction, Gender Studies

Number 2 of the series: Personal/Public Scholarship

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Privilege Through the Looking-Glass

A bestseller for 2018!

Privilege Through the Looking-Glass is a collection of original essays that explore privilege and status characteristics in daily life. This collection seeks to make visible that which is often invisible. It seeks to sensitize us to things we have been taught not to see. Privilege, power, oppression, and domination operate in complex and insidious ways, impacting groups and individuals. And yet, these forces that affect our lives so deeply seem to at once operate in plain sight and lurk in the shadows, making them difficult to discern. Like water to a fish, environments are nearly impossible to perceive when we are immersed in them. This book attempts to expose our environments. With engaging and powerful writing, the contributors share their personal stories as a means of connecting the personal and the public. This volume applies an intersectional perspective to explore how race, class, gender, sexuality, education, and ableness converge, creating the basis for privilege and oppression. Privilege Through the Looking-Glass encourages readers to engage in self and social reflection, and can be used in a range of courses in sociology, social work, communication, education, gender studies, and African American studies. Each chapter includes discussion questions and/or activities for further engagement.


IPPY Awards 2018 -- in the categories of Anthologies and Multicultural Nonfiction Adult
Maine Literary Awards 2018 -- in the category Anthologies
USA Best Book Awards 2018 -- in the categories of Anthologies Nonfiction, Education/Academic, and Multicultural Nonfiction

PRAISE FOR  Privilege Through the Looking-Glass

Privilege Through the Looking-Glass offers a varied and profound examination of how privilege functions as the underside of power. This is a powerful and important book about inequality, identity, agency, and the challenge of addressing difference as part of a democratic ethos in a time of growing authoritarianism all over the world. Every educator should read this book.” -- Henry A. Giroux, Ph.D., Professor of English and Cultural Studies, McMaster University, and author of America at War with Itself

“Patricia Leavy has brought together a group interdisciplinary scholars who have taken up the formidable challenge of analyzing how their own lived experiences are understood and measured by manufactured norms produced historically by systems of mediation (institutional, cultural, social, economic) and intelligibility that are often invisible and that position them differentially (politically) in a structured series of dependent hierarchies that privilege whiteness over non-whiteness, capital over labor, maleness over femaleness, etc.  While it is often a privilege to live in the world of theory, we need to remember that when we scratch a theory, we discover biographies, we find histories and we find pain. Privilege Through the Looking-Glass is a courageous volume that blends theory, personal experiences, and reflections on contemporary debates over identity.  This is a book that is more about the politics of identity than identity politics.  It is a powerful testament to the urgency of understanding privilege and deserves to be read widely.” -- Peter McLaren, Ph.D., Distinguished Professor in Critical Studies, Chapman University, and author of Paulo Freire, Che Guevara and the Pedagogy of Revolution, and Pedagogy of Insurrection

Privilege Through the Looking-Glass unmasks the casual “isms” that suppress the best aspects of our humanity, by assembling a powerful and honest collection of parables. Poignant and unflinching, the contributors eschew to the cloak of objectivism to give the hard truth about privilege as a social ill, and the collective responsibility of the conscious community to confront all forms of oppression. Stimulating to the highbrow, yet palatable to the lay, this book has lessons for anyone with the spirit to explore better ways to be themselves and relate to others.” -- Ivory A. Toldson, Ph.D., Professor, Counseling Psychology Program, Howard University, and Editor-in-Chief for The Journal of Negro Education

“Never was a book that critically interrogates privilege so urgently needed. From microaggressions to macroaggressions, Patricia Leavy’s latest book stays true to her commitment to linking the personal and political in public research, and these multiple passionate contributors demand that readers wake up, take action, and do the same in our own work and everyday lives.” -- Anne M Harris, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Principal Research Fellow, RMIT University

Privilege Through the Looking-Glass offers readers a reflective and reflexive response to the confounding and corrosive issues that inform, and sometimes govern, people's everyday lives and identities. In highly accessible and unique ways, this book shines a light on the complexities of cultural life, and in ways that will entice and challenge readers, compelling them to re-think their ways of being with others, and themselves.”  -- Keith Berry, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of Communication, University of South Florida and the National Communication Association Anti-Bullying Task Force Co-Chair

“To be included in Patricia Leavy’s world is inspiring but to have the opportunity to read her work on privilege, power, oppression and the expectations or freedoms from persons of diverse backgrounds and statuses, well that’s just exhilarating. As a social policy instructor and clinical social worker, I always find opportunities to use Leavy’s work with my students, whose testimonies include their own exhilaration in exploring privilege and power and perhaps even discovering their own unexposed privilege.” -- Renita M. Davis, LCSW, PIP, Social Work, Troy University

“Marshalling the power of storytelling, Privilege Through the Looking-Glass offers a collection of essays wherein experienced scholars confront, challenge, and explicitly discuss everyday forms of racial, sexual, gendered, and ablest privilege embedded in contemporary social life.  In so doing, Leavy and the contributors offer an admirable introduction to the many ways the personal is political, and invisible privileges operating at varied levels of society can be made visible and subject to correction.  Well-crafted through combinations of scholarly expertise and personal experience, Privilege Through the Looking-Glass may be an ideal text for sensitizing students to the myriad of social forces operating within, around, and beyond their own everyday experiences and assumptions.” -- J.E. Sumerau, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Sociology, University of Tampa, and author of Cigarettes & Wine


Patricia Leavy, Ph.D., is an award-winning independent sociologist and best-selling author.

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Privilege Through the Looking-Glass