Anti-racism ‘from below’: exploring repertoires of everyday anti-racism

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Journal Article
Ethnic and Racial Studies, 2016, 39 (1), pp. 105 - 122
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© 2015 Taylor & Francis. ABSTRACT: While a focus on institutional anti-racism challenges structural formations of racialized inequality, the inattention to quotidian resistance misses the complex manner in which racism is negotiated in everyday life. Examining ‘everyday anti-racism’ can better identify the cultural repertoires that frame how individuals deal with racism across different contexts. This paper shares findings from ethnographic research with Filipino migrants living in Sydney. Specifically, it focuses on middle-class Filipino migrants and their use of social mobility to manage routine racism. The experience of middle-class racial minorities presents distinct perspectives as their strategies do not sit comfortably with anti-racism ideals of ‘equality for all’. I advance the concept of everyday anti-racism to argue for a broader anti-racism politics that captures situated approaches to combating racism. Furthermore, I propose that the identity repair in middle-class contexts offer a chance to build anti-racism praxis that cuts across traditional solidarities.
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