After class on Tuesday when we discussed Spelman’s article on the Ampersand Problem, I recalled my own experience looking for the “right” college and my acceptance into Rhodes. When I started my college search, there was always a specific fraction of how many percentages there are of certain races or males to females. Every college had this sort of demographic breakdown. Through my college selection process, people would say that I would get into any college I wanted regardless of my accomplishments and only on the basis that I am an Indian female because that will increase any college’s diversity. I was told the same thing when I got into Rhodes, that I got accepted because I was an Indian female and Rhodes is known to be a predominantly white school hence more ethnicities would diversify Rhodes College. I had never thought of my admission into Rhodes as a contributor to an institution’s fight against underlying discrimination or that my acceptance could have caused an equally qualified male not to be admitted. As we discussed in class, if you help one type of oppressed group you will unconsciously be enforcing another one. For example, I was admitted into Rhodes therefore, Rhodes had to overcome racism by giving me admission into the college; however, I might have been given admission while rejecting an equally qualified male. Therefore, even though the admissions department accepted a more racially diverse candidate, they did reject the male candidate, so sexism is advanced.
I wonder if we can apply this concept of trying to combat oppression to the concept of transparency and thickness, as seen in Lugones’s article, in regards to the college admission process. The aim for accepting ethnicities is to make campuses culturally more accepting. If admission into a college is based minutely on a person's nationality or race, then we are starting the process of college on the grounds of groups. There are certain people that will be represented as thick or transparent if we accept people on the basis of oppression groups; thus does the college admission process cause thick and transparent members in the group to form?
To clarify, I am not trying to say that Rhodes only accepts students on the basis of race or ethnicity but I am simply using Rhodes as an example. I might be completely off the mark but I am not sure how we can overcome issues such as sexism if we have this sort of a problem when dealing with the admission of oppressed or minority groups on a college level.
By putting an emphasis on diversity we are in fact enforcing groups within the student body by laying out such demographics before and during the admission process. Would it help to actually appreciate diversity on college campuses by not publicizing the demographics of a college?