The double-consciousness of the stigmatised – Professor Imogen Tyler, and Barry Oshry: Can the Dominant Culture Truly See the Other?

Barry Oshry has just reissued his piece ‘can we truly see the Other’ as ‘Can the Dominant Culture Truly See the Other?’ and says:

My original title for this piece was: Can We Truly See the Other? Recently, it struck me that I needed to be clear about who the WE is that I’m addressing. This is not a message primarily aimed at people of color, although there is likely to be much of interest in it for them.  The intended audience is the White dominant culture. There are powerful forces aimed at bringing about fundamental societal transformations in policing, housing, healthcare, employment, education, governance, and more. The pressure is on the dominant culture, and fundamental to the dominants’ response to these challenges is how we (I’m one of them) see the other. Throughout our history and continuing today certain images and perceptions of the other have supported discrimination and oppression. How do such images arise and how can they be changed? Both questions are the subject of this piece.

This seems to me to link to this piece:


The double-consciousness of the stigmatised – Professor Imogen Tyler


The double-consciousness of the stigmatised

A short slightly adapted extract from chapter 5 of Stigma

 Sociological Imagination

In The Sociological Imagination (1959), the American sociologist Charles Wright Mills famously stated that ‘no social study that does not come back to the problem of biography, of history and their intersections within a society has completed its intellectual journey’.[i]  Indeed, the promise of sociology is the critical sensibility which it cultivates when we tease out ‘the public issue or problem contained in the private trouble’.[ii] This forging of connections between the personal and the political, between individual biographies and the histories that shape them, is particularly urgent today.  As the sociologists Nicholas Gane and Les Back argue, ‘in a neoliberal world which seeks to tear asunder private troubles from public issues, and thereby turn social uncertainty into a personal failure that is divorced from any collective cause or remedy, the linking of biography and history is a vital part of a sociology that is both politically and publicly engaged.’[iii]

continues in source:

The double-consciousness of the stigmatised – Professor Imogen Tyler