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    The Critical Race Theory and the Way to Avoid Criticism

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    An intelligent Black boy, who dumbs himself down to avoid criticism. The Hispanic girl who stays at home to take care of her family, instead of going to school. The Asian who pursues a career in medicine, despite wanting to be an actor. All of these strange actions can be explained by the Critical Race Theory. In short, the Critical Race Theory examines how victims of racism and stereotypes counter prejudice. Under the Critical Race Theory falls stereotype threat in which victims assume the roles that they think are prescribed for them based on popular stereotypes. The aim of stereotype threat and the Critical Race Theory is to explain both negative and positive ways minorities are affected by their race and how this reflected in our society as a whole.

    Firstly, when on the topic of stereotype threat and critical race theory, one can think of several negative examples. One powerful illustration of the Critical Race Theory is The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, by Junot Diaz which chronicles the life of Oscar Wao and his family as they attempt to navigate through life while struggling with their Dominican heritage. Diaz describes Oscar Wao as, ” [Oscar] Had none of the Higher Powers of your typical Dominican male, couldn’t have pulled a girl if his life depended on it.

    Couldn’t play sports for shit, or dominoes, was beyond uncoordinated, threw a ball like a girl. Had no knack for music or business or dance, no hustle, no rap, no G. And most damning of all: no looks. He wore his semi- kink hair in a Puerto Rican afro, rocked enormous Section 8 glasses – his “anti-pussy devices,” Al and Miggs, his only friends, called them-sported an unappealing trace of mustache on his upper lip and possessed a pair of close-set eyes that made him look somewhat retarded.” (Diaz 2012)

    Throughout the book, Oscar struggles with being pressured to be the “typical Dominican male” in order to be happy and get girls, despite the fact that he enjoys being a nerd and hopeless romantic. Every time Oscar and the other character in the book give in and conform to fitting Dominican stereotypes, it always backfires. This phenomenon, according to The Critical Race Theory, is applicable to real life. People tend to change or hide parts of themselves in fear of being ridiculed by others, or they try so hard not to fit into a stereotype that they still end up boxed in.

    On the other hand, people are not only negatively affected by the Critical Race Theory and stereotype threats. Stereotype threat is described as, “A negative stereotype about a persons’ group, and he or she is concerned about being judged or treated negatively on the basis of this stereotype”. (Spencer, Logel, Davies 2015) When people are confronted with such stereotypes they tend to subconsciously conform to them. While some may say that conforming or letting yourself fall victim to stereotype is always a bad thing, there a several reasons why it may not be negative. First and foremost, not all stereotypes are negative.

    For example, the stereotype that Asians are intelligent, Jews have a lot of money, or Africans are good athletes. Fitting into these roles are not a negative thing, it is only when one tries to force themselves into a role that is not meant for them that it becomes bad. Secondly, stereotype threat could be seen as a defense mechanism. Many stereotypes once fit or still fit certain groups of people and in some circumstances going outside of what is expected could put a person/people in danger. While conforming to some stereotypes may not always be seen as a positive thing, if conforming is what is necessary to survive and be safe then it is what must be done.

    This essay was written by a fellow student. You may use it as a guide or sample for writing your own paper, but remember to cite it correctly. Don’t submit it as your own as it will be considered plagiarism.

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    The Critical Race Theory and the Way to Avoid Criticism. (2022, Dec 20). Retrieved from

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