Identity Ignored: The Illusion of a Colorblind Society

None at Living Room

Mon, May 13 at 7:30 p.m.   |   90 minutes

Join professor Briana Toole as we look at 'Colorblind Ideology' from a philosophical and existential viewpoint instead of just a political one.

“I don’t care if you’re black, white, red or yellow – I don’t see color!” “The only way to end racism is to stop talking about race.” “I don’t even see race!” We are in the grips of colorblind ideology, and these statements are all indicative of the wider embrace of this social phenomenon. On its face, colorblindness sounds great. After all, as we now know, race isn’t real– it is merely a social construct. In that respect, isn’t the way to achieve the equality we all hope for to ignore the superficial phenotypic differences once used to segregate us? Much like race, however, the idea of colorblindness is itself but a shallow illusion, one that does more harm than good.

In this Olio, we’ll examine not just whether it’s really possible not to see race, but what’s wrong with not seeing race. It is no accident that the statements above are often the first words out of someone’s mouth when accused of racism. And so, in this space, we’ll examine the problems posed by colorblind ideology – ranging from the personal and political to the epistemic and existential. To fail to ‘see’ race is to fail to appreciate a central part of who a person is and how they experience the world – and perhaps, even, to do them a special kind of existential injustice. Though we may each of us long to live in a post-racial world, colorblind ideology forces us to confront the question – what is it we’re really blind to?

*This Olio will take place in a living room in Ditmas Park Brooklyn*

Teacher: Briana Toole
Venue: Living Room
Add to Calendar May 13, 20197:30 p.m. May 13, 2019 America/New_York Think Olio | Identity Ignored: The Illusion of a Colorblind Society Join professor Briana Toole as we look at 'Colorblind Ideology' from a philosophical and existential viewpoint instead of just a political one. None

What is Think Olio?


Think Olio is here to put the liberation back into the liberal arts.

Classically, the liberal arts, were the education considered essential for a free person to take an active part in civic life. To counter a humanities that has been institutionalized and dehumanized we infuse critical thinking, openness, playfulness, and compassion into our learning experience.

Read more about our mission, our story, and how we are doing this.

Scenius Membership

If Friday night lectures, museum field trips, and living room salons sound like your kind of thing, then you've found your people. We can't wait to welcome you to the Think Olio Scenius. More info


Other Upcoming Olios


Cancel Culture

Location: at Online

Teacher: Jeanne Proust

Aug. 9, 2020, 2 p.m.

'A Poem About My Rights': Reading June Jordan

Location: at Online

Teacher: Christina Katopodis

Aug. 12, 2020, 8 p.m.

Know Your Rights! A Constitutional History of American Protest

Location: at Online

Teacher: Lawrence Cappello

Aug. 13, 2020, 7 p.m.

The Great Revelator: The Exploitation of the Black Body from Slavery to Covid 19

Location: at Online

Teacher: Jamie Warren and Sheldon Applewhite

Aug. 16, 2020, 4 p.m.

Marx Was Right: Capitalism Failed

Location: at Online

Teacher: Hadas Thier

Aug. 19, 2020, 8 p.m.

Embracing Uncertainty: Writing the Hybrid | Found Forms

Location: at Online

Teacher: Amanda Krupman

Aug. 20, 2020, 8 p.m.


Stay in Touch


Instagram Mailing List Contact

Get Involved


Liaisons Host an Olio

Olio: A miscellaneous collection of art and literature.