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Explorations in Diversity

Examining the Complexities of Privilege, Discrimination, and Oppression

Third Edition

Edited by Sharon K. Anderson and Valerie A. Middleton

Publication Date - 09 January 2018

ISBN: 9780190617042

368 pages
7 x 10 inches

In Stock

Narratives by professionals and future professionals unpacking the complexities of privilege and oppression in our multicultural world.


Every person comes to know and understand their life from their own perspective. As a result, it is often difficult and sometimes unbelievable to realize that others, whom one may or may not know, might also experience daily life in a vastly different way. Explorations in Diversity offers readers the opportunity to step into the lives of diverse others and experience their lives through their eyes. Some readers may find themselves struggling to comprehend or even believe the experiences this text's authors share, or where they fit within each narrative. However, each account in this text ultimately aims to open minds, hearts, and mouths in ways that push each of us toward a better understanding of our own privileged statuses so that we can use who we are, what we say, and what we do to make our society more accepting and inclusive of all our diverse representations.


  • Offers true-life stories -- written and shared by a multiculturally diverse cross-section of people -- regarding the complexities of privilege and oppression.
  • Authors share individual journeys toward coming to recognize their varied statuses associated with privilege, and ultimately unpack them.
  • The experiences with privilege, oppression, and discrimination detailed in this unique collection are raw, honest, complex, and told from the heart.
  • Readers can connect to many of the text's narratives as a way to understand themselves and diverse others.

About the Author(s)

Sharon K. Anderson, PhD, MA, is a Professor within the School of Education at Colorado State University.

Valerie A. Middleton, PhD, MED, is a Professor in the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at the University of Northern Colorado.

Table of Contents

    Section 1-Stories of White Privilege, White Racial Identity, Whiteness, and Intersectionality
    Chapter 1: An Awakening to Privilege, Oppression, and Discrimination
    Sharon K. Anderson
    Chapter 2: Whiteout: Growing Out of the Problem of White Privilege
    Heidi A. Zetzer
    Chapter 3: The Challenge of Accepting White Privilege after Living a Life of Poverty
    Deborah Megivern Foster

    Section 2-Stories of Ethnic Complexities, Privilege, and Intersectionality
    Chapter 4: No Parece, pero soy Latino: The Privilege and Prejudice Inherent in Being a Light-Skinned Latino without an Accent
    Edward A. Delgado-Romero
    Chapter 5: Going Through Cultural Barriers in Counseling
    Ruth Chao and Ying Shan Doris Zhang
    Chapter 6: Oppression of the Spirit: Complexities in the Counseling Encounter
    Devika Dibya Choudhuri
    Chapter 7: Unmasking Within-Group Prejudice, Internalized Oppression, and Privilege: A Case Study
    Felice Lichaw, Marya Howell-Carter, Meagan Voulo, and Michael Harris
    Chapter 8: Exploring the Intersections of Race, Gender, Sexuality, and Class in the Clinical Setting
    Damien W. Riggs
    Chapter 9: Navigating Oppression, Diversity, Power, and Privilege in Pursuit of Achievement and Success: An International Perspective
    Saliwe M. Kawewe

    Section 3-Stories of Assumed Privilege
    Chapter 10: Assumed Privilege: A Double-Edged Sword
    Allan Edward Barsky
    Chapter 11: "Who, Me? White?": The Process of Acknowledging and Challenging Racial Privilege
    Helen G. Deines

    Section 4-Stories of Socioeconomic Privilege and Classism Complexities
    Chapter 12: Experiencing Class Oppression and Privilege in Work, Romance, Psychotherapy, and Education
    Colleen Loomis
    Chapter 13: A Place on the Ladder: Socioeconomic and Ability Privilege
    Kathleen M. Davis

    Section 5-Stories of Sexual Identities, Gender, Cisgender
    Chapter 14: Fierce Dyke Caught Doing Husband's Laundry: Marriage-The New Frontier
    Jessica Pettitt
    Chapter 15: "Head Ladies Center for Teacup Chain": Exploring Cisgender Privilege in a (Predominantly) Gay Male Context
    N. Eugene Walls and Kelly Costello
    Chapter 16: Becoming a Counseling Professional Lesbian: Revisiting Privilege and Challenges
    Joy S. Whitman

    Section 6-Stories of Ageism, Sexism, and Heterosexism
    Chapter 17: The Ism We May All Face One Day
    Jacqueline J. Peila-Shuster
    Chapter 18: I Almost Quit My Career Today: The Experience of Isms at Work
    Geri Miller
    Chapter 19: How I Got My Wings: Growing Up Female in the 1950s
    Carol L. Langer
    Chapter 20: Increasing Awareness of Heterosexism and Homophobia: A Personal and Professional Journey
    Allison L. Kramer
    Chapter 21: "Men Can't Be Raped": The Challenge of Sexism in Counseling
    Heather Trepal

    Section 7-Stories of Differently Abled and Ableism
    Chapter 22: Diving Greatly: Reflections on Ableism
    Jessica Lloyd-Hazlett
    Chapter 23: Dirty Secrets, Unholy Unions, and Death Sentences: Disability-Based Oppression and Privilege
    Paul E. Priester with Karla Ivankovich

    Section 8-Stories of Gender, Race, and Identity Development
    Chapter 24: Of Paper Plates and Poetic Things: A Black Lesbian Pedagogy on the Horizon
    Kianna M. Middleton
    Chapter 25: Ethnic Beauty in a Western Society: An Examination of Black Identity Development
    Sametra Polkah-Toe with Valerie A. Middleton
    Chapter 26: Skin Color: An Issue of Social Status and Privilege
    Linda Robinson
    Chapter 27: Racism by Way of Education: The Politics of Privilege and Oppression
    Daryl H. Thorne

    Section 9-Stories of Allies, Activists, and Personal Compassion
    Chapter 28: Personal Compassion and Alliance Building: Interrupting Cycles of Discrimination and Relational Dehumanization
    Matthew R. Mock
    Chapter 29: Allies and Activists: Working With White, Male, Heterosexual, Cisgender, or Christian Privilege
    Barbara Gormley
    Chapter 30: Yes, I See You're Committed to the Cause . . . But Where's Your Credibility, and Why That Angst?
    David MacPhee

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