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OPTIONAL: Text Study: Power, Privilege, and Social Justice

  1. Remind your students that one of the issues between some African Americans and whites that we've already discussed is one of power and privilege. The white activists whose letters we read were from middle-class backgrounds. Their families had "made it" and since they didn't have to fight for their own rights they could fight for someone else's rights. However, not all Jews in America have power and privilege.
  2. Distribute the Power, Privilege, and Social Justice Document Study to your students.
  3. Have a couple of students take turns reading aloud the introductory material and the excerpt from Paul Cowan's book An Orphan in History. Stop them occasionally to clarify terms or phrases, or provide a little extra background information.
  4. Discuss the document with your class using some or all of the questions provided. Emphasize what Cowan discovers about how power and privilege relate to social justice issues, while encouraging your students to share their own responses to the situation he describes.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "OPTIONAL: Text Study: Power, Privilege, and Social Justice." (Viewed on October 21, 2014) <http://jwa.org/node/11775>.

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