Sunday, April 24, 2011

Self-Selection in the Suburbs on Sunday Morning

After Daedalus devoted its Summer 2010 issue to the phenomenon of mass incarceration, I decided to start subscribing to the journal.

I did it the old-fashioned way, by sending in a check. So it took a while before my first issue arrived.

Now, however, I’ve received the Winter and Spring issues, a two-part exploration of Race in the Age of Obama. The editors have assembled over 400 pages of learned discussion, by some two dozen authors, on many different aspects of the status of race in American society.

Perusing the titles tonight, I was reminded of just how suburban my life has become. At work, I interact regularly with colleagues from diverse racial backgrounds. Yet in my private life, including my church life, I am so often insulated from a proper awareness of racial dynamics by the lulling effect of white suburbia.

Why is Sunday morning the most segregated time of the week? There is nothing new about this reality. But it's important to keep asking the question.

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