Antiracist Moral Identities, or Iris Murdoch in South Africa

  • L Blum


I argue that Samantha Vice understates the moral resources white people have available to them to minimize their falling into distorted ways of perceiving and responding to the world caused by bare white advantage. In doing so, she paints an unjustifiably pessimistic picture of white civic involvement in South Africa, and anywhere where white people are unjustly advantaged, such as the United States. I delineate two similar but distinct antiracist moral identities—the ‘white ally’ and the ‘person committed to racial justice’—that can guide civic engagement, as well as provide a counterweight to the distortions of whiteness. I argue that Vice’s recommendation of withdrawal from public engagement in humble silence is not the most morally appropriate response to white privilege.

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 0258-0136