Invisibility of Social Privilege

Invisibility of Social Privilege

Most Privilege is not recognized as such by those who have it. In fact: one of the functions of privilege is to structure the world so that mechanisms of privilege are invisible- in the sense that they are unexamined -to those benefit from them’’’ ( Bailey cited in Peace, 2010, P 9)

Discuss the above statement in a 200 words. The following question may assist in composing your post

1 How would you define social privilege?

Social privilege can be defined as a feeling that an individual or group has an entitlement to specific rights at the expense of others, and particularly the marginalized or minority in the society.

2 How is the invisibility of privilege reflected in structural, cultural and personal oppression?

The social privilege, and especially the white privilege in Australia has led to discomfort, sadness, guilt and anger among those who feel they are oppressed (Baldwin, 2016). Those who do not enjoy the social privilege feels that they are disrespected. Although those who enjoy the benefits of social privilege might not be active in advancing it, their social positioning gives them an upper hand to continue enjoying it. This is one of the ways how social privilege is invisibly reflected social within structural, cultural and personal oppression contexts. White people, who are usually favoured by social privilege, usually denies having benefited from it. They tend to use the strategies of denying, distance and dismantle as advanced by (Lowery, 2020). For example, they would associate their success to working hard even when it is clear they benefited from social establishments. They also tend to attribute their achievement to hardships they faced in the process. By doing so, they give a blind eye to the existing privilege, and in case they tend to agree on its existence, they deny having benefited from it.

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3 What are the impacts of the internalization of dominance?

Internalization dominance leads to colonization, racial exclusion, systematic racism, bias, oppression and emergence of socially privileged groups. This because with internalization dominance, members of the agent group accept their superiority status as deserved and normal (Williams, 2016). As such, they will perceive oppression, colonization and racially exclusion and abuse of others as their rights.

Give an example of whiteness you have witnessed?

I have witnessed whiteness in the school context, where the white students abuse and call names to students from other races. For example, I have witnessed several scenarios Asian, African and Aboriginal students being violently attacked, hit or spit because of their ethnicity.


Baldwin, J. (2016). Understanding Race and Privilege. National Association of School Psychologists. Retrieved from https://www.nasponline.org/resources-and-publications/resources-and-podcasts/diversity/social-justice/understanding-race-and-privilege

Lowery, B. (2020, July 7). Speaking of Psychology: The invisibility of white privilege with Brian Lowery, PhD. Retrieved from American Psychological Association: https://www.apa.org/research/action/speaking-of-psychology/white-privilege

Williams, T. O. (2016). Internalization of Dominance and Subordination: Barriers to Creative and Intellectual Fullness. New Directions for Student Leadership, 2016(152). Retrieved from https://doi.org/10.1002/yd.20211

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