Skip to main content

3 myths about racism that keep the US from progress - Candis Watts Smith


1,337 Questions Answered

TED Talk

Let’s Begin…

Racism morphs, spreading and hiding behind numerous half-truths and full-blown falsities about where it lives and who embodies it. In this actionable talk, political scientist Candis Watts Smith debunks three widely accepted myths about racism in the US and calls for a nuanced, more expansive definition to support this new era of anti-racist action.

Additional Resources for you to Explore

For more information about Candis Watts Smith's books, including Stay Woke and Racial Stasissee here.

For more details about segregation in schools, see this 2014 report by the Civil Rights Project at UCLA.

For more information about disparity in state prisons, see here.

To read more about the research of racial attitudes of prejudice across different regions and states of the US, see here

A 2016 study conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute showed that 91 percent of the average white American’s closest friends and family members are white, and just 1 percent are black.

The link between residential segregation and racial inequality is well established, so it would seem that greater equality would prevail in integrated neighborhoods. But as Sarah Mayorga-Gallo argues, multiethnic and mixed-income neighborhoods still harbor the signs of continued, systemic racial inequalities. To read more about Sarah Mayorga’s research, see here.

For more details about Christopher DeSante’s research into generational attitudes towards race, see here.

To learn more about how white parents confront issues of race and racism with their children (or how they often don’t), see herehere, and here.

Next Section »

About TED Talk Lessons

TED Talk Lessons are created by TED-Ed using phenomenal TED Talks. Do you have an idea for a lesson? Create it now using any video from YouTube »

Meet The Creators

  • Speaker Candis Watts Smith

More from Troubleshooting the World