White people: the normative social standard

Note from BW of Brazil: Over the past few years I’v noticed numerous articles and interviews posted online discussing discrimination against persons around the world who are classified as white. Imagine that. After centuries in which persons with white skin have raped, pillaged and plundered the resources and bodies of people of color the world over, now descendants of those same people are complaining about a tendency in which they see a sort of reverse discrimination against them in lands of their forefathers or lands in which their forefathers stole and colonized. 

Do Black Women of Brazil

You know what? If you follow some of the happenings around the world in places such as Europe and the United States, one could actually see and agree with some of the actions that are being taken that put whites at certain (not absolute) disadvantages. That’s actually a longer discussion beyond the scope of today’s post, but what amazes me about this discourse of anti-white discrimination is that those same whites seem to have a sort of selective amnesia about the continued dominance of white skin in nearly every sphere of Western societies. This influence also saturates nations that don’t have majority white populations.

Regardless of how they may see an apparent acceleration in diversity in various areas of societies, the fact remains that when most people of color themselves (consciously or subconsciously) think of beauty, power, intelligence and humanity itself, the individuals they often think of come wrapped in white skin. So while it may be true that there is an agenda to diversify the European world, today, whiteness continues to be the standard for which ALL people of color will be judged throughout their lives. Around the world, as in Brazil, there is simply too much evidence of this to even need to debate the topic. So for white people who may be reading this article today who feel there is an agenda at play to diversify the European world or replace whiteness, maybe you should study the past five centuries of European-oriented domination of non-white peoples around the world. Maybe then you will be better able to understand what we’ve been saying ever since!


Google image search using the key words ‘ricos brasileiros’ or ‘rich Brazilians’

White people: the normative social standard

By Joice Berth


Minsters of the Supremo Tribunal Federal or Brazil’s Supreme Court Justices

If you are a white person, you are a person absolutely within the social standard, within normativity.

No matter if your hair is shaved, no matter if your beard has grown to the belly, no matter if you do not shave your legs and underarms, no matter if your hair is purple, lilac or pink. You are within the standard.


Google image search for ‘apresentadores TV brasileira’ or ‘Brazilian TV hosts’

The default is to be white and heterosexual. Preference thin, very thin. But if you are white and fat, that’s ok, they will induce you to lose weight to be 100% within the standard. White and fat people, mostly men, are 50% within the standard. White women, heterosexual and fat women are 30% within the standard. But they are still within because the default is white.

If you are not straight but still white, you are 50% within the standard. You will have problems, but will find a place in the sun, because society wants white people. Society wants white couples, white families, white businesses, white schools and universities, white bankers, white owners of buildings, white teachers and doctors, all white.


Google image search for ‘lindas brasileiras’ or ‘beautiful Brazilian women’

This is the default.

If you have a monogamous relationship with another white person, you are within the standard. It doesn’t matter that both are vegan and NGOs owners in the style of white savior or abdicating the comfort of their privileges. It is standard. If you are white and have a polyamorous relationship, it’s is also standard, provided that all are white.

In any situation where you remain white in a society that places beng white as standard, you are standard.


Google image search for ‘lindos brasileiros’ or ‘handsome Brazilian men’

Now, whites that are standard: stop finding themselves subversives only because they have something that clashes with the conservative flow of normality, either aesthetically or politically. White people from your midst criticize you, but deep down love you because they recognize you. And they will adjust something if possible, but if you resist they will accept you, in a good way, because you are white.

Recognizing this is the closest thing you can do to subvert the logic. Recognizing that you are the standard in any situation. But why doesn’t the white standard like to acknowledge that it is standard? Why use this privilege to joke about making a revolution. Hence we collide with a legion of patricinhas (preppy/valley girls) grateful-protectors-of-animals-why-black-feminism and unshaven-ones-of-love-has-no-color-Guevara-loyalists-racist-loosermanos-caricatures, thinking they are fighting against oppression, when in truth they are just reinforcing the white standard that gives rights to all, even to think that they are outside of the standard.


Google image search for ‘ministros de Temer’ or Cabinet of (interim President) Michel Temer

Think of how to break this standard that you all in your eagerness in seeing yourselves outside are increasingly inside.

I, who am really not the standard, because despite being thin, I am negra retinta (a dark-skinned black woman), I know the path and I speak of this path daily. Backed by over 50,000 manas e manos (guy and girls).

Listen…and stop being pathetic.


Google image search using the keywords ’empresário brasileiros’ or ‘Brazilian businessman’

We cannot take any more of your laughter in psychedelic whirlpools that you promote to talk about the “political tragedies” that don’t even affect you and how much you need to leave Brazil because “tá foda” (it’s fucked up). You are the standard. Practice what you say, be what you pretend to be to impress your mozões (great loves of their lives).

You wear a polo shirt and hair down to your waist, with no problem, it’s not the aesthetic upon which  the revolution is based, because if it were you would have already liberated the entire Latin America. Be real fighting against yourselves and the standard that you represent. It’s more dignified.

SourceCasa da Mãe Joanna



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