As people, we have all had experiences that have influenced us, social groups we belong to, ideals we admire and strive to achieve, values we believe in and hold dear. All of these things shape the way that we see those around us, how we judge them, consider what they need and want, as well as what might be best for them, or “healthiest” for them. Where we see ourselves, where others see us and put us, and how we got to this position is part of our positionality, which is rooted in our ideology and the ideological principles of our culture.

In order to be good public health educators/professionals/programmers/researcher, it is critical that we spend time being reflexive and acknowledging our own positions, particularly if ours is a position of power over someone else. Which, as a public health professional, is usually the case, since people respect and listen to the “experts.”

So, for this assignment, please read the attached article on unpacking white privilege and watch the video on privilege

Write a response paper (2 pages) thinking about the following things:

  • 1) What did you think of the article and video? Did you agree with it? Did anything jump out at you from it? Is there anything that concerns you? What did you learn?
  • 2) Write 1-2 paragraphs describing your own positionality. Tell me about all of the ways you identify yourself, all of the groups you think you are a part of. For example: how do you identify your race, gender, religion, interests, cultural traditions, passions, hobbies.
  • 3) What are some of the areas where you experience privilege and possibly judge or oppress others; or where you can see how you are oppressed or judged because of your sex, race, sexual orientation, cultural traditions or other variables.
  • 4) How could your positionality influence your work in public health? Provide some specific examples.

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