Culture and the Media
The White Subject
Dyer, R. (1997). White: Essays on Race and Culture. London: Routledge, pp. 1-14.

In his book on the racial imagery of white people Richard Dyer suggests that in the West whiteness is often taken to be the 'default' race, a norm that does not require consideration. In this extract from the Introduction he reflects on the significance of his own whiteness to his life and work, and to his sense of identity and subjectivity

Further Reading

Back, L. and Solomos, J. (2000). Theories of Race and Racism: A Reader. London: Routledge. Key readings in race studies, including several essay on whiteness.

Brown, H., Gilkes, M., and Kaloski-Naylor, A. (eds) (1999). White? Women: Critical Perspectives on Race and Gender. York: Raw Nerve Books. Collection of essays examining whiteness and gender.

Carby, H. (1992). The Multicultural Wars. In: Dent, G. (ed.). Black Popular Culture. Seattle, WA: Bay Press, pp. 187-99. On the use of black texts as a sign of multiculturalism.

(charles), H. (1992). Whiteness: The Relevance of Politically Colouring the 'Non'. In: Hinds, H., Phoenix, A. and Stacey, J. (eds). Working Out: New Directions for Women's Studies. London: Falmer, pp. 29-35. On race and gender.

(charles), H. (1993). 'Queer Nigger': Theorizing 'White' Activism. In: Bristow, J. and Wilson, A. R. (eds). Activating Theory: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual Politics. London: Lawrence & Wishart, pp. 97-106. Discusses Dyer (1988).

Dyer, R. (1988). White. Screen 29(4), pp. 44-65. Reprinted in: Dyer, R. (2002) The Matter of Images: Essays on Representations. 2nd ed. London : Routledge, pp. 126-48. Dyer's first discussion of white imagery.

Dyer, R. (1997). White: Essays on Race and Culture. London: Routledge.Dyer provides close analyses of white imagery in a range of film and TV texts, including classic muscle-men, colonial women, and the associations of whiteness with death.

Frankenberg, R. (1993). White Women, Race Matters: The Social Construction of Whiteness. London: Routledge. On white privilege and gender, based on interviews in the US.

Gould, S. J. (1980). Why We Should Not Name Human Races: A Biological View. In: Ever Since Darwin: Reflections in Natural History. Harmondsworth: Penguin, pp. 231-36. Gould considers races as subspecies; interesting parallels with the continua of the Taxonomic Subject.

Hacking, I. (1990). The Taming of Chance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Chapter 19 concerns 'The Normal State'.

hooks, b. (1992). Representations of Whiteness in the Black Imagination. In: Black Looks: Race and Representation. Boston, MA: South End Press, pp. 165-78. Includes hooks' discussion of the liberal belief in a "universal subjectivity" (p. 167).

Kimmel, M. and Ferber, A (2003). Privilege: A Reader. Boulder, CO: Westview. Includes several essays on whiteness and its relation to other forms of privilege.

Lipsitz, G. (2006). The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: How White People Profit from Identity Politics. Revised and Expanded ed. Philadelphia: Temple University Press. Wideranging, but focuses particularly on American public policy.

McIntosh, P. (1992). White Privilege and Male Privilege: A Personal Account of Coming to See Correspondences through Work in Women's Studies. In: Anderson, M. and Collins, P. H. (eds). Race, Class and Gender: An Anthology. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, pp. 70-81. Includes McIntosh's discussion of the invisible weightless knapsack.

Morrison, T. (1993). Playing in the Dark: Whiteness and the Literary Imagination. London : Picador. A study of whiteness in American literature.

Said, E. (1995). Orientalism. London: Penguin. Said analyses the West's construction of 'the Orient' as a means of making sense of itself.

Ware, V. and Back, L. (2002). Out of Whiteness: Color, Politics and Culture. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. Explores the interconnection of whiteness and popular culture, with chapters examining particular examples.


Borderlands 3(2) (2004), 'Why Whiteness Studies?'. Riggs, D. W. (ed.). Retrieved 24 January 2006 from here. This entire issue of the journel Borderlands is devoted to white studies.

Feminist Theory 8(2) (2007), 'Rethinking Whiteness'. Gunew, S. (ed.). This entire issue of the journal Feminist Theory is devoted to white studies.