Track: Social Responsibility
Presenters: Keith Blocker, WMFDP | FDP Global | Donna L Ginn, White Men as Full Diversity Partners (WMFDP) | Mei Ratz, White Men as Full Diversity Partners (WMFDP) | Michael Welp, WMFDP
Class and caste. We talk about the former but reserve the latter word for rare discussions of groups and people in other places, not in the U.S. Or we ignore it or see it as a subset of ethnicity or race. Some even proclaim class to be “dead.” We assume meritocracy counterbalances the forces of socioeconomic class.
But class and caste are very much alive. Our cultural conditioning growing up and our socioeconomic status as children and as adults shape our mindsets and sense of well-being in subtle but powerful ways. They influence our sense of self and how we relate to others, our cultures, and our worldview.
Now more than ever, we think it’s important to bring the conversation about class back into the work of creating inclusive workplaces. In the U.S. for example, there are groups who, in spite of their group identity, feel disenfranchised, unseen, and unsupported despite their assumed privileges (often of race and gender).
Let’s explore this often-imperceptible force and how it intersects with how we understand privilege. These dynamics shape so much of who we are and how we move through life.
- Explore unseen facets of culture dynamics at play in groups and organizations around the world
- Look at the intersectionality of class and privilege, particularly regarding leadership
- Increase awareness of class differences and subtleties to highlight the complexity of identity