How did America become a nation obsessed with race? A Time for Change explores America’s beginnings as a “class-based” society, the creation of America’s racial consciousness through the invention of the social construction of “whiteness”, and the ways in which white supremacist ideology has been infused, reinforced and perpetuated in the collective American mind and culture through the utilization of stereotypical images of blacks. The purpose of the book is to explore how the ideology of white supremacy has done immeasurable damage to all Americans, whites as well as blacks and other persons of color. In this context, the relationship between racism and classism is explored. The book provides an opportunity by which those Americans who identify and are perceived as “white” can engage in a process of self-reflection to transcend one’s attachment to the social construction of “whiteness” and white supremacy ideology that have been forced upon them. It is the premise of this book that racial healing in this nation can only occur through a true examination of America’s history, as well as individual and collective responsibility and efforts to undo over 300 years of racist cultural conditioning.
Martha R. Bireda, PhD, is director of the Blanchard House Museum of African American History and Culture, located in Punta Gorda, Florida. For over 30 years, Dr. Bireda has consulted, lectured, written about, and provided assistance to school districts, law enforcement agencies, and corporations concerning issues related to race, gender, class, culture, and power.
Chapter I: Before “Whiteness”
Chapter II: The Invention of “Whiteness”
Chapter III: The White Supremacy Culture
Chapter IV: The Indoctrination of White Supremacy
Chapter V: The Impact of “Whiteness” Indoctrination
Chapter VI: The Promise and Limits of “Whiteness”
Chapter VII: The Time for Change
A Primer for Enlightened “Whiteness”
About the Author
A Time For Change: How White Supremacy Ideology Harms All Americans is a Blueprint for change. I want to commend Dr. Bireda for delineating how White America's treatment of minorities under the banner of White Supremacy has severely damaged democracy. For several centuries the White Supremacy system has disenfranchised and marginalized Blacks and other non white races. A Time For Change is a document, if implemented that can bring all Americans together to help eradicate these inequities.
Dr. Bireda pulls back the curtain of secrecy on White Supremacy and allows us to honestly view it’s poisonous effects on our American culture and institutions. Unless we work to diagnose the disease of White Supremacy in our body, we can never hope to cure it. This is a work of healing. As with most medicines, it may not taste good and there may be side effects, but it needs to be taken to eradicate the disease. Let the treatments begin!
Dr. Bireda offers a unique perspective on White Supremacy by juxtaposing the past and present to expose the insidious nature of white supremacy ideology. She mindfully and with great clarity takes the reader on a historical journey through the evolution of white supremacy ideology and educate us to the threat it poses to all Americans.
Martha Bireda has grappled with a subject whose importance and relevance has never been greater in our lifetimes. The stain of White Supremacy on the fabric of our democracy can never be fully removed but it can be made to fade by the light shone on its origins, its mechanisms and the devasting impact racist cultural conditioning has had on our collective consciousness. Martha Bierda shines that light in her latest work, A Time for Change: How White Supremacy Ideology Harms All Americans.