Insults Real or Perceived: The Debate Over Microaggression

Insults Real or Perceived: The Debate Over Microaggression

Debate is flaring on college campuses about perceived insults based on race, ethnicity and gender. We explore "microaggression" and personal hurt versus public harm.

Even an unintended slight can sting: A stranger asks an Asian-American student, "No, where are you REALLY from?" A professor seems surprised when a black student aces an exam. A growing number of college students are chronicling and discussing these perceived insults on blogs and social media, under the heading of "microaggression." Kojo asks whether such slights are a hurtful form of prejudice or an unavoidable result of an increasingly diverse society.


Amitai Etzioni

Professor of Sociology and International Affairs, George Washington University; Author of "The Spirit of Community: The Reinvention of American Society" (1993, Touchstone)

Jennifer Oki

Educational Editor, The Microaggressions Project

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The Kojo Nnamdi Show is produced by member-supported WAMU 88.5 in Washington DC.