chapter  2
27 Pages

Routine matters

WithCeline-Marie Pascale

This chapter deals with the premise that racialized inequalities come to rest in those things assumed to be so real that they are undeserving of thought. It explores the logic by which commonsense maintains its authority to secure the recognition of race and concludes with considerations for social change. The chapter addresses two questions: How is race produced as a routine matter that requires no elaboration? And, what are the effects of the productions? It analyzes both how commonsense constitutes people as accountable members of racialized groups and to what effect. The chapter demonstrates how commonsense knowledge produces the apparently self-evident nature of race, and examines how the commonsense recognition of race covers over the struggles of race. The effect of routine racial categorizations in newspapers is to naturalize race as inherently relevant. To the extent that whiteness is an unmarked racial category, it appears to be irrelevant. Whiteness thus is produced as a “normal” way of being.