This photo essay shows how racism is more than 'prejudice' and 'discrimination' - Generocity Philly


Jul. 7, 2017 10:33 am

This photo essay shows how racism is more than ‘prejudice’ and ‘discrimination’

It’s the newest project from photographer Ted Goldman, who uses his camera to “tell important stories with pictures and words to make a difference.”

Maria James, a vendor with One Step Away and one of the subjects of Ted Goldman's newest photo essay.

(Photo via Ted Goldman at

“Anger in my belly” …  “like experiencing the death of a loved one” …  “sad because they don’t know me.”

These are a few of the emotions that were expressed by African Americans when asked by Philly photographer Ted Goldman what it’s like when they experience racism. “Racism: Personal Stories” is the newest photo essay produced by Goldman, who has used his camera to both visualize and tell the individual stories of his subjects, including those in Philly’s homeless community.

Check out the full essay here.

Published on July 4 (not a coincidence), the essay focuses specifically on eight local African Americans, such as Ivan Henderson, vice president of programming at the African American Museum in Philadelphia, and Broderick Green, who overcame homelessness and a substance use disorder to become a support specialist at the nonprofit that lifted him up, Depaul USA.

“I’m just like you — we’re both people, we both bleed, we both cry for sad moments, we both love people in our lives,” said Stephanie Michel, director of the North 5th Street Revitalization Project, in the essay.

In addition to these stories, Goldman, a white man, starts off the essay with a pretty up-front point: He didn’t understand racism before this whole project. While he acknowledges that in itself is a bad thing, he believes “knowing I don’t understand it is at least a step in the right direction.”

And that’s what he hopes this essay will do for others — help them take a step in the right direction.

“This photo essay is for people like me who hate racism in our society, but don’t know what to do about it or even how to think about it, and who have no idea what African Americans are really experiencing,” Goldman said in the essay. “We might assume African Americans who seem successful and happy are not experiencing racism — but we really don’t know their truths.”

Albert Hong

Albert Hong is Generocity's contributing reporter. He started hanging around the Technically Media office as a summer intern for and eventually made his way to freelancing for both news sites. While technology and video games are two of his main interests, he's grown to love Philadelphia as a city and is always excited to hear someone else's story.

  • Marvin Iavecchia

    The truth is, liberals, dems, MSM and the like, are the real racists… we know this to be true. They incite racism in minorities (and so many ignorant white liberals) making them believe everything that happens is because of bigotry or poverty. And the only way out is to give them more free stuff: money, cell phones, health care, food, housing…. Racism is inherently human nature – more along the lines of being ‘judgemental’ – everyone is judgmental to one degree or another. It is human nature and will never go away.

    What has gone away (thank God) in the United States and Western society at large, is institutional or mainstream acceptance of racism… but the MSM and libs will have you believe that despite having a black president, successful business owners/billionaires like Oprah that there is some widespread racism conspiracy in the United States. Cops killing blacks for example… Such GRAND LIES perpetrated solely to prop up a liberal democratic agenda, voter bribery, and an excuse to transfer wealth from rich to poor. We need to move on, together! Look in the mirror, pull up your big-boy pants, take responsibility for yourself and go get jobs/education/speak english/dignity/respect/independence and stop clinging to the past or looking for any reason (monument or statue) to blame something on racism, sexism, xenophobia homophobia… the United States is becoming great again – thank God and President Donald J. Trump!

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