I understand some people may be confused why these good sound things are bad things.

1. The way culture functions makes these familiar things sound good in a way that isn't thought about, welcome to the conversation

2. A lot of it is bullshit. https://twitter.com/ByronYork/status/1283372233730203651
For example "hard work being the key to success" is in many very important ways incorrect! It turns out being born rich and attractive can be enough!
The problem with white culture isn't that all of these things are bad or exclusively white. It's that its a story the privileged group tells about the world that justifies the benefits it reserves for itself and the harms it does to everyone else.
In other words it isn't just or even mostly about *values* that a group aspires to and/or assumes other groups will aspire to, but a series of beliefs about how the world actually *works*.
Some of these things are good! Some of them are bad. Some of them are good or bad depending on the context in which the belief is acted upon. that's a conversation worth having.

But you need to understand that they're assumptions that people internalize without realize it.
As a life long observer of white Americans I can assure you they have a culture. A couple of them really, that interlock, some of which we call "American culture" and some of which really are particular. https://twitter.com/dubbusthe2nd/status/1283489974248263682?s=20
I don't know how how to poster writer intended it, but when talking about culture, I don't equate whiteness with a skin tone nor Caucasians, but rather the present top of the American racial caste system as it travels and changes through time. https://twitter.com/dubbusthe2nd/status/1283490485689032705?s=20
So, people with similar skin tones to white Americans outside of the American context are only relevant insofar as white Americans within the American context feel kinship to them.
If you understand this joke you already know how to use whiteness in this sense. https://twitter.com/tznkai/status/1273321657692819456?s=20
Considering I am responding to someone else trying to dunk on something a third party wrote, you'll excuse me if I don't take responsibility what you think "white culture" has to mean? https://twitter.com/dubbusthe2nd/status/1283490963680264199?s=20
Well, being the dominant culture tends to allow and trend towards oppression so both?

It might help to understand that "culture" does not mean "food, language, media" but "behaviors, norms, assumptions".
Among the folks I grew up with, we always describe distance as time. As in "how far is the Dairy Queen?" "oh, 10 minutes".

That's a bit of Michigan culture. It's both more specific and less than that, but let's go with Michigan culture for now.
Now, here's where this gets interesting. There's a number of embedded assumptions in giving someone a distance as time. Namely, that you're going to drive to that destination. In fact we'll also assume you're driving about 5mph over the speed limit and may take the freeway.
Because if you didn't assume someone was driving, you'd have to give multiple time estimates, or ask. But by and large people don't need to ask and they don't even think to ask. They just know.

That's how culture works. Everyone assumes the same answer to unasked questions.
Now, this behavior is not going to be universal across Michigan, nor restricted just to that state. It will probably be common in any combination of geography and socioeconomic status where everyone drives by default.

N.B. what I'm describing predates Google Maps.
Culture is neither arbitrary nor deterministic. It exists because many people in communication with each other are responding to material conditions and each other, across generations.

So that it will inflect differently across race is not surprising.
If you close your eyes and imagine a "archetypal American church" and how people act during that service, most people will think of think of solemn, silent people, perhaps with some shushing of children. Possibly some folks raising their hands upwardly awkwardly.
Now what happens if I ask you to imagine an "archetypal Black church"?

So it might make sense to describe the first church and its attendant culture as white.
I get and very much support people who are reluctant to imply that white people are the only ones who do or are allowed to hold white cultural assumptions as described on that poster. But analytically, it's useful to think of it, or them, as white culture(s).
So this is critique is a little bit right and a lot extremely wrong, because you cannot assume just because something is a part of a culture that it is exclusive to the culture, or that anyone is claiming it is!

If I told you that in American culture we eat eggs and bacon for breakfast do you assume that no other culture eats eggs and bacon for breakfast?
Can you show me where in the poster you think it says we're talking about white supremacy at all? https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283771974133653504?s=20
Same query https://twitter.com/JohnCarltonKing/status/1283772084729118721?s=20
Similarly, why do you think the poster says "white people are good at scientific objectivity" as opposed to "white people value scientific objectivity" as opposed to "white people claim that they are scientifically objective"?

Do you think it's possible the National Museum of African American History and Culture might want to have a conversation about the dominant culture of America and the "standard practices" it created that African Americans live with? https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283773269645172736?s=20
Where did the scientific method shaping slavery or not come into it? https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283775192750346240?s=20
Most of the poster is just listing cultural attributes. This description at the top is the best available explanation for what their point is.

Can you explain what you base your interpretation on?

No. It shouldn't imply bad faith, it's merely a way of stopping a conversation from fragmenting, especially when I am responding to multiple people and putting together an adhoc essay on culture as a concept. I picked it up from @greg_doucette.

If you feel there is something relevant you said I missed and would otherwise be in bad faith in not QTing, I will certainly take that under advisement.

Alternatively, we can carry on in DMs or not at all. But ForestFires are bad. http://meatballwiki.org/wiki/ForestFire 

I see we went with the "not at all" option.
More precisely, it it "isn't sufficient to imply bad faith" https://twitter.com/AlexGodofsky/status/1283781203364061184?s=20
Also, all conversation On Here is done with your interlocutor but *for* your audience, who may or may not include your interlocutor and your followers.

I'm trying to get people to understand how to think and talk about culture, these ideas are linked together.
Of course, the way that many people simply accept On Here that replies are rational discourse and QTs are mean invitations to dogpile is, well,

that's part of the culture of this place.
You sure there's no cultures that think that success is determined by divine favor? How about personal connections and family bonds? https://twitter.com/bykerseven/status/1283782352578252801?s=20
Not Wholly Persuasive is my cover band cover band.

(You're fine. As I said elsewhere, I rewired my thinking on culture so long ago I've forgotten the path) https://twitter.com/dubbusthe2nd/status/1283783458796576770?s=20
Let me try it this way, as I was taught in teacher education classes so long ago.

There are assumptions we white people (I am not white, but this is how the class went) carry about the world and how things work that we simply don't realize we carry. https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283782945380204544?s=20
For example, you probably think all of these things are good, normal, and we should approach all problems.

But that's not the only way of doing things, and it's not the only good way.
If a student takes a position in history class, they may not be able to explain it in a linear fashion, with clear cause and effect and with case studies. They may not even want to. They may find it normal to talk about emotional impact instead.
They may find qualitative description equally valid or superior forms of evidence.

That doesn't mean they're bad or a bad student. It just means they're doing something different, because they weren't raised with the same assumptions as you.
Whether you as a teacher may ultimately have to teach them to reason in a particular style in order to navigate the world is a difficult question that we're here to talk about, but the first step is thinking about why you expect everyone else to reason the same way you do.
We've shifted contexts from "hard work" to "good work" (and for that matter, success to reward).

And I'm saying more simply, not every culture thinks the reason people succeed is because they put in a lot of effort. https://twitter.com/bykerseven/status/1283784773735976964?s=20
Some cultures weight divine favor, some random chance, or natural talent, bloodlines, connections, and/or all sorts of other stuff. The so-called Protestant work ethic also associates work that is *unpleasant* with success, not just effort.
Three things.

1. I think I made it reasonably clear there are problems with the approach

2. Aren't you implicitly and improperly accepting that logic is superior to emotion for no reason?

3. why would you assume that all nonwhites think a certain way?

The point is not "you are the only ones who think this way" but "not everyone thinks like you, has values like you, has the same tool kit you do, or followed the same incentive structure growing up"
I'm not here to defend the poster from theater criticism. I am going to say if you're going to go after it for making claims it doesn't make because you don't understand how culture works you need to do the reading.

That's the general "you". https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283788109558288391?s=20
A single fable is not a great metric. The centrality of the stories or lack thereof is what's important. https://twitter.com/bykerseven/status/1283788542150418434?s=20
Again, you're not required to believe that all or any white people are actually good the values they espouse nor that they have exclusive claim to all or any of it.

It's a market basket of values and behaviors. You're free to get your own. https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1283790087235555329?s=20
OK. Gonna pause on direct responses for a second. Someone DM'd me some good thoughts I am going that I want to quote that I think will clarify a lot of the confusion or at least crystallize the disagreement.
"As I understand it, you're making a point similar to the one expressed by Rod Graham here.
[S]upposedly the point of an education is to learn to recognize how much of what we believe to be true about the world is fundamentally shaped by our culture. https://twitter.com/roderickgraham/status/1283502629268729857
I think there is a great deal of confusion over the term "whiteness." One sense of "white culture" is that it's just one culture among many, and that it becomes oppressive when it is forced on other people.
The other view of "whiteness" is commonly held by academics, as summarized in this twitter literature review: https://twitter.com/JBooth_history/status/1277416990840434688
In this view, "whiteness" is [only the] inherently oppressive [] unequal power relationship. Describing "white culture" means describing the way one group of people oppress another.

I think some of your interlocutors think the poster is referring to th[is] definition[.]"
Thus ends the thoughts of a smart person who asked not to be identified because they were not authorized to speak on the matter.
That was *mostly* a joke about journalism.
The poster is citing a 1990 one-pager, apparently made by a consulting group. https://twitter.com/bykerseven/status/1283796373473841152?s=20
One of the best parts of Stuff White People Like is that it talks about the white people we would recognize as hipsters and also the "wrong" kind of white person.

It was a brilliant and incisive blog and I remember talking about it to my white friends. https://twitter.com/OrigenOfSpices/status/1283797219662073856?s=20
The reaction was... mixed.
Yes, this, this exactly.

Which I think he may have stolen from Zhuangzi? https://twitter.com/apark2453/status/1283797976377221122?s=20
Taken from Zhuangzi Speaks the Music of Nature, by Tsai Chih Chung and translated by Brian Bruya.
For what it's worth I would synthesize the two views like this:

1. White culture can be examined as a culture like any other

2. The boundaries of white (American) culture, is constructed more or less arbitrarily to define the top of the racial order https://twitter.com/tznkai/status/1283793884322172928?s=20
2 cont'd. That is, unlike most other cultures which have some shared ethic, rule, language, or tenure, whtieness is a self-defining ouroboros whose contents shift more or less arbitrary. See., e.g., Jews, the Irish, Arabs, and East Asian Americans
Absent-minded professor is a stereotype, but it didn't exactly come from nowhere.

And again, I (apparently) understand this poster very differently because I have been part of the circles that talked about culture this way. https://twitter.com/bykerseven/status/1283801229341200391?s=20
OK, lots of interesting discussion happening on threads and DMs, so I gotta consolidate here to make a couple related points.

1. The poster was either badly executed and thus misinterpreted OR
Correctly interpreted saying white people are awesome

You're gonna have to pick.
2. Without regard to what the poster says, *I am* arguing that white culture is a thing that can and should be analyzed distinctly as a series of associated (but not exclusive!) assumptions, narratives, and views.

If you disagree, please sever that from poster criticism.
3. No seriously, talking about the subtle unspoken narratives a people tell themselves does not suggest those narratives are true if only because that's the only way to discuss why they are false in the first place.
3 cont'd. I swear to God all of you knew how to do this two days ago. https://twitter.com/tznkai/status/1283774792919912450?s=20
I just realized talking about white culture without implying white supremacy is a weird rehash of masculinity versus toxic masculinity.
God damnit Chait https://twitter.com/jonathanchait/status/1284131865209839618?s=20i
And who determines whether or not they are virtues and who gets to decide who is acting in accordance to those virtues?
Does some of this stuff go around the bend? Absofucking-lutely, scroll up on the musuem page and lets pick on Peggy Macintosh. But this is just ignorance of social science.
Some of you don't seem to understand how having virtues can turn into oppression.

Let's say among the races that race A has higher propensity for snorklepax than all other races. Forget why for a second, it's just borne out in the stats.
Lets further assume that race A has a dominating influence, through sheer numbers and positions of power, across a culture, and they all start promoting that idea that snorklepax is a virtue.
Even though it is *actually* true that propensity for snorklepax differs by race, it still enforces dominance in the racial structure, because they've changed how the game is scored based on what they're good at.
This dynamic remains a problem without regard to whether snorklepax is good, bad or indifferent. It remains a problem if tiny minority race B has an even higher propensity for snorklepax. It is a massive structural advantage created by controlling what the culture values.
Now let's make it worse.
If you scroll up you'll see that I didn't tell you if snorklepax was innate or not and you may have assumed it was. If so, just think about why you might have.

Let's suppose it's in fact linked to wealth. As in people who are wealthy find it easier to cultivate snorklepax.
An actual historical example would be in Tang Dynasty China where the first national examinations were instituted, theoretically allowing any poor person with enough merit to rise to high government position.

If they could somehow get an education.
In addition to the inherent resource barriers to getting an education, you should also think about the incentive structures facing poor person in Tang Dynasty China and whether those lead one naturally to cultivate the skills required to memorize Confucian works.
Back to snorklepax, because snorklepax isn't a stand in just for education, but any trait that a culture can pivot on. If it's linked to wealth, you create a vicious cycle where the people on top of the heap make virtuous the thing that keeps them at the top.
In fact this works for any sort of power, not just money. If you control how the game gets scored you have a lot of power. And you can use that power to determine who gets to get good at the game.
Let's make it worse.
Let's further suppose that there is a race C, who do not score highly in general on propensity to snorklepax, are under resourced to find time to cultivate snorklepax, and by and large live in situations where they cultivate adaptive traits that are snorklepax antagonistic.
But hey, here are many members of race C who do have a lot of snorklepax.

How does race A respond to those individuals?

It can tokenize. It fetishize them. Or, given the incredible power race A holds, it can refuse to recognize snorklepax in them at all.
In fact, since snorklepax is so valued, powerful members of race A can also create the image of having snorklepax when they do not. More powerful members can simply declare that they have it.
Can you see how utterly irrelevant it is whether snorklepax is actually virtuous or not with regard to the power of race A and how it effects all the other races in the society?

Also social scientists in anthro, sociology, pyschology, etc. But education specialists have done a lot of the heavy lifting.
Which someone who thinks about education reform should probably fucking know a bit about.
I have some posts on here about fictional Professor Whitebread and how this stuff really does screw up.

But the underlying mechanism is that it's very hard to get people at the top of the racial heap to not essentialize other races under any prompt. https://twitter.com/Danpearson266/status/1284139683933560835?s=20
An inherent problem for white people with the privilege that white people have is that they simply do not have the lived experience of being a minority, except for the handful who have moved around world, sort of.
So everything they do to try to compensate for that, well-meaning or otherwise, is going to be difficult and rely on intellectualized processes. They're gonna fuck it up.

So if they're gonna fuck it up anyway, let's tell the nuanced truth.
Black person in Japan and white person in Japan are (I'm told and have read) very different experiences! https://twitter.com/MtrKDJoyce/status/1284149327800213504?s=20
So I would say that the poster is trying to get things to a first approximation. Most white people most of the time. I would also agree they're falling short of even that. https://twitter.com/K_NoiseWaterMD/status/1284155087229726720?s=20
Culture is fractal. It cannot be accurately described at any appropriate level of zoom, it can only be modeled. And all models are wrong, just some of them are useful.

So yes, there are actually many white cultures.
The thing is when you think about how a lot of white people treat Appalachian whites in particular, there is a definite tone of "look at these white people who have failed at being white enough" alongside the SWPL's invocation "the wrong kind of white people"
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