Coates - Black White Divide

In different groups, there are different rules and social norms. Some things that one does when within people of their own culture are acceptable while the some things can be deemed unacceptable in other social groups. For example, table manners differ in different households and the rules for how you should act in different households depends on the background of that household. If you are a guest at a white or Americanized household, it would not be unusual for them to pray before eating or say amen and food would also be served in individual portions on plates. If you are a guest in an Asian household, things are usually more lax and welcoming and food would be served in dishes where you take as you eat.

A time when I feel as though I was an outsider was when I went to an event that was dominated by white participants. I felt as though I had to walk on eggshells with my appearance and the way I spoke because they had a different way of acting that what I was used to and it felt like I was expected to act like the majority of the participants. I had to code switch to speak very professionally and it felt like I was constrained by different social norms in a different society that I was used to. It became easier as I continued personifying a different personality than the one I usually was, but it still was not a comfortable experience.