It's taken me a while to realise this about a conversation I had. We're running a training scheme for people from under-represented minority ethnic backgrounds in museums and gallery education. It was put to me that I need to target people from African Carribean backgrounds and, basically, not to worry about Asian (Indian) backgrounds because there are loads of them already working.

At the time I just took that in as some kind of truth. But I have just realised how problematic and untrue that is. Firstly, it my experince and the experince of professional representative bodies that I have discussed this with, that the sector is overwhelmingly white middle class women - about 85-90%. So it is statistically fallacious that there are so many Asians in the field. I also recall an interview I heard ages ago on the radio, which at the time I found deeply problematic because it talked about racism only in terms of anti-Asian and -Black racism. The interviewee talked about two different and distinct sorts of racism - anti-black racism which assumes that Asians are ok but focuses hatred and exclusion around black people and anti-Asian racism which finds that Black people are ok but Asians are...whatever...

<< | >>