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Essay about Racism: Basic Tips

by in Other
Black People

Whether you were assigned such a topic, or it is your wish to compose such an essay, you must remember that an essay about racism is not going to be lighthearted. Even though some people believe that there is no racism in developed modern countries, they could not be more wrong, because racism cannot be erased and solved in just a second. Four hundred years of systematic oppression of black people, for example, is going to resonate in any society, and you should pay attention to the consequences of racist mentality. This article will help you write a school essay that will be convincing and will raise specific issues that should be discussed in any society that wishes to work on its flaws and develop in a harmonic way.

Reasons to Write It

There may be quite a few reasons why you wish to focus on such a topic in school. Maybe, you were just given a much broader topic of human rights and wish to dwell upon a part of this topic, maybe, you need to state out everything that has been on your mind recently, maybe you were just assigned it. Here are some reasons that can help you motivate to write an excellent thought-provoking essay.

Challenging the Default

Have you ever noticed that some people, when they talk with each other, will specifically regard to their colleagues or acquaintances as members of a group? How many times have you heard “my black friend John” or “I went to a woman-doctor”? This means that when they say “friend” or “doctor”, they will automatically assume that the friend is white and the doctor was a man. You can combat this stereotype of assigning the default with your essay.

Amplifying the Voices

If you are a white person you can still write an essay about racism. Just make sure that in your essay you focus on the important fact that you are amplifying the voices of the black community. Many activists that are not specifically subjected to discrimination, though they mean no harm, often focus on themselves and how this issue makes them feel, or even try to justify their actions, by telling that they “have a lot of black friends” and such. Do not be one of these people, choose to highlight the feelings and thoughts of the oppressed group. This is a valid reason to write your essay, as it is a proved fact that the oppressors will more likely listen to someone who is just like them, then to someone who is different.

Raising Issues

Girl Speaks Out

With your essay, you can raise important issues, that your professor or classmates are unaware of. Sure, they may have thought about these issues, but presenting them in an illustrative way in a well-composed essay might make them want to dwell deeper on the topic, will influence the way they think and their behavior. Do not be afraid to speak out on important problems that need to be eradicated, it is the first step towards tackling such a problem.

Examples of Specific Issues

Believe it or not, there are a lot of issues that can be discussed in your essay. You can conduct your own research, speak out on things that you have witnessed personally and so on. However we can also propose a few severe problems that can be turned into powerful messages of support


Many people believe that now that there are laws that all people are equal, there cannot be racism, however they forget about the recent history of oppression. Because of this oppression, even though legally everyone is equal, white people still have privilege in a lot of areas. For example, just a small fraction of the wealthiest people in the USA are black, because huge amounts of money are often inherited in generations, and since there were no black millionaires when black people did not have the same rights, this problem of privilege still resonates in the country.

Cultural Appropriation

Some people still think it is funny to dress up as other races for Halloween. This is an issue that can seriously upset and break the heart of many people of color. If you want to go as a “black person” a “Mexican” or a “native American” for Halloween, you should probably reconsider your intentions. Because your costume will consist of “traits” that are just normal for any black, Mexican or native American, while you will be using them to raise them to a level that will incite ridicule, rather than respect.

School Segregation

You may argue that segregation is long gone, it does not exist and thus, it is important to focus on something that is real and here. However, if you look at the average school in the USA, you may find out that some of them are still predominantly black, and some predominantly white. Dwelling further into the subject, you may find out how it all depends on the neighborhoods, as some neighborhoods have more white families, and some more black. You may think that this is not an issue, just the way families choose to live, however, doing a little bit of research you will find out that schools that have a bigger amount of black children lack governmental funding and have worse conditions. It is a good topic to consider and research for your essay.

Lack of Representation


A hot topic in the media today, lack of representation in movies and books is quite staggering. Just looking at Oscar nominees will give you an idea of how small the percentage of people of color in the movies there actually is. The average hero is most likely white and male, and if there is a group of people, only one of them is usually a person of color. You can focus on this issue and illustrate this point of view with eye-opening statistics. Also, do not forget to add that being represented in media matters, and state your reasons.

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