Understanding whiteness and racism

Season 6, Episode 1,   Aug 12, 2020, 02:00 PM

With the theatre closed, we take a moment to ask: when we reopen, should we really go back to business as usual? We don’t just want to pay lip service to Black Lives Matter and then move on without making any real changes to the way we operate as an organisation. It is not enough to stand against racism in theory, we need to be actively anti-racist. This is the first in a series of episodes dedicated to Shakespeare and race, specifically Shakespeare and anti-racism. So, we’ll be asking what if we looked at the world – our own world, the world of theatre and the world of Shakespeare – through whiteness? The way we talk about race is so often couched in ‘otherness’, in putting labels on groups based on difference; but different to what, other to what? In this episode we will be unpicking what that term whiteness means, speaking to sociologist Dr Steve Garner. And over the course of the next few episodes we will look in depth at the way we read Shakespeare, the way we educate students in classrooms, lecture halls and rehearsal rooms and the way we operate our stages through this presumption that whiteness is somehow the norm.