Resource Details

Disarming Racial Microaggressions: Microintervention Strategies for Targets, White Allies, and Bystanders

11/14/2022 7:48am
American Psychological Association

Abstract: Given the immense harm inflicted on individuals and groups of color via prejudice anddiscrimination, it becomes imperative for our nation to begin the process of disrupting,dismantling, and disarming the constant onslaught of micro- and macroaggressions. For toolong, acceptance, silence, passivity, and inaction have been the predominant, albeit ineffec-tive, strategies for coping with microaggressions. Inaction does nothing but support andproliferate biased perpetrator behaviors which occur at individual, institutional and societallevels. This article introduces a new strategic framework developed for addressing microag-gressions that moves beyond coping and survival to concrete action steps and dialogues thattargets, allies, and bystanders can perform (microinterventions). A review of responses toracist acts, suggest that microaggression reactions/interventions may be primarily to (a)remain passive, retreat, or give up; (b) strike back or hurt the aggressor; (c) stop, diminish,deflect, or put an end to the harmful act; (d) educate the perpetrator; (e) validate and supportthe targets; (f) act as an ally; (g) seek social support; (h) enlist outside authority orinstitutional intervention; or (h) achieve any combination of these objectives. We organizethese responses into four major strategic goals of microinterventions: (a) make the invisiblevisible, (b) disarm the microaggression, (c) educate the perpetrator, and (d) seek externalreinforcement or support. The objectives and rationale for each goal are discussed, along withspecific microintervention tactics to employ and examples of how they are executed


Submit A Resource

Is a resource missing? Submit your resource here.