Stuff White People Like

Here is an amusing (and slightly painful) read to have lying round on your IKEA coffee table. I can certainly self-identify with many of these – for example: farmer’s markets, proper coffee, tea, wine, 80’s nights, Apple products, irony, kitchen gadgets, documentaries, standing still at concerts, outdoor performance clothing, avoiding confrontation, not having cash, eating outside, books, laminate flooring, and cheese. The book served to highlight to me just how much I am a product of those around me.

It also got me thinking, are there some things on these lists (and perhaps others besides) which we could call ‘Stuff White Middle Class Conservative Evangelicals Like.’ The kind of stuff we like to pretend is biblical, but is really just cultural. For example: People standing still while singing. Preaching aimed at the mind primarily (hopefully with some witty irony in there). Creche. Powerpoint. Three points. Starting on time. Bible study groups. Real coffee. Finishing on time. A hermeneutic of suspicion. Students. For me too these are a few of my favourite things. Reading Stuff White People Like just made me aware of how much my cultural context shapes my views and attitudes. It’s sometimes healthy to stand back and examine (and be amused by) our cultural foibles. That’s something else the book suggests white people like – self-awareness. Oh, the irony.

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