Sam White is a bi-racial student activist who has a radio show called Dear White People. She’s working hard to implement change at Winchester University (a predeominately white institution (PWI)), starting with her appointment to Head of the all-black dorms Armstrong/Parker. A huge racial divide is brewing between the whites and the blacks at the school.
The movie simultaneously follows the lives of three other black students attending the university, including Coco, who comes off as an Uncle Tom, Troy Fairbanks who is the son of the school’s dean, and Lionel Higgins, who is the nerd, stereotyped and bullied mostly because of his sexuality. Sam and Lionel along with a group of other racially diverse students ultimately work together to ignite the biggest race war in their school’s history as a result of a racist Halloween party thrown by a popular student magazine.
This movie hit home for me in more ways than one. If you went to a PWI, then you know what it means to be an “other.” I spent the majority of my college career, but specifically my last two years feeling like an outsider. I just didn’t feel like I was in an environment that understood me. When I saw this movie, I felt like I wasn’t alone. Someone had to feel the same way to create such a real and culturally poignant movie for my generation. I say my generation; because this movie deals with the individual and institutional racism we encounter at the most prominent universities in America today. It also channels a modern-day Spike Lee Joint. This movie isn’t an attack on White people but illustrates the experience of what it means to be black in America or in a smaller scope what it means to be black in a university where the majority is non-black.
I encourage you to watch for yourself. I found the movie on Hulu
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