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RACE AND PRIVILEGE: How We Can Render the Invisible Visible (and Why We Need To), a lecture by Sean Fitzpatrick

  • Friday, September 06, 2019
  • 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • The Butler Boardroom, American University, 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20016




What, exactly, is whiteness? Our contemporary conversation about race in America can be as confusing as it is necessary and overdue. Whiteness is largely invisible to those who are white, until they encounter someone who is nonwhite. 

The racial binary of white/black, or white/notwhite, ascended in the American imagination in the first half of the 20th century, when more complex, pseudoscientific racial classification systems collapsed as biological science disproved their foundations.  In this presentation, we will explore the construction of whiteness in America – why (and for whom) it was useful as a marker of difference, how it connotes normativity, and why it remains so persistently difficult for those who are white to see our whiteness. And we will explore the relative value of understanding whiteness from different depth psychological perspectives: as an avoidance of shadow, as an archetypal identification, and as a reflection of a fundamental resistance to acknowledging the unconscious.

Sean Fitzpatrick, PhD, LPC, is the executive director of The Jung Center. He has master’s degrees in religious studies and clinical psychology, and he completed his doctorate in psychology, with a concentration in Jungian studies, at Saybrook University. He is also a psychotherapist in private practice. His first book, The Ethical Imagination: Exploring Fantasy and Desire in Analytical Psychology, will be published by Routledge in August 2019. 

For directions to the Butler Boardroom of the American University, please click here.


5200 Cathedral Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20016


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The Jung Society of Washington is a nonprofit educational institution. Although many of the Jung Society's programs involve analytical psychology and allied subjects, these offerings are intended, and should be viewed, as a source of information and education, and not as therapy. The Jung Society does not offer psychoanalytical or other mental health services.
Images of mandalas throughout this site were created by Carl Jung's patients between the years 1926 and 1945.
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