Getting Out of Our Own Way: Considerations of White Resistance and White Fatigue


Location: via Zoom — RSVP for link

Joseph Flynn
Joseph Flynn

RSVP for Zoom link

Joseph Flynn is an associate professor in the College of Education at Northern Illinois University in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction. He is also the associate director of academic affairs at the Center for Black Studies. He received his Ph.D. in Curriculum, Teaching and Education Policy at Michigan State University. Professor Flynn’s professional focus is on the intersection of multicultural and social justice education, as well as Whiteness studies, media and popular culture, and curriculum studies. His work has made him a wide-ranging media expert on timely topics in education, politics, entertainment, and culture.

In 2018, he won the American Association for Teaching and Curriculum’s O.L. Davis, Jr. Outstanding Book Award for White Fatigue: Rethinking Resistance for Social Justice. That same year, the College of Education honored him with an Outstanding Contribution to Social Justice award in recognition for his positive promotion of diversity across campus.

Professor Flynn developed and facilitates a social justice summer program for educators. This three-day professional development experience brings K-12 teachers and administrators together to help them confront and address issues of diversity in their classrooms.

Here is a synopsis provided by Professor Flynn of what he will focus on in his presentation:

There are a number of terms we use to describe challenges White folks have in developing an anti-racist and social justice orientation. Terms like White resistance or White fragility can oftentimes be interpreted as dismissive or insulting, even if they are appropriately applied. However, those terms do not always accurately capture what some White folks experience when faced with challenges in understanding anti-racism ideas. In this session, Dr. Flynn will explore his idea of White fatigue, an idea that attempts to identify White folks who may show resistance, despite a fundamental understanding that racism is wrong.

Sponsored by the Department of Psychology's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee.

RSVP for Zoom link

Originally published at