Being White

Albany Video

1987, realization: Tony Dowmunt, 30 mins, U-matic low band, black-and-white, 14 mins (excerpts), original in the London Community Video Archive (LCVA).

An educational tape made with racism awareness coaches, designed for use with (mainly) white audiences to focus on the (at the time) hidden issues of whiteness and white privilege, and how these are reflected across class and ethnicity.

Excerpts from interviews, three women A, B, C.
A   White means individual variety, and black is still a generalization.
B   White people colonize the definition of normal. They walk around in their daily lives not being white, but just being normal. So that makes everybody something else. Until white people agree to start becoming white people, so that there is room for black people and brown people and all other forms of people and get out of the space that is defined by normality.
C   I can remember my Dad say in Deptford (South London): Before everyone was going on about black people, we said it was the Irish, in Deptford, that got all the stick. It is always someone. Because we have been brought up to be such … Society makes us think that we are such great people, the white people, or the English people even, not just white. English people, British people are so powerful, you know, the Empire and all that …