Davidson Microaggressions Project

“Pick Your Brain” about Racism

A white woman colleague once told me she would love to “pick my brain” sometime because our knowledge and research interests around racism have possible overlaps interdisciplinarily. She said it in passing and as a way to forge a connection with me. But I thought, hell NO, you cannot! My brain is not yours to simply mine for usefulness to aid your research agenda. Just read and cite my work instead. Why would anyone say this to anyone at all but especially from a white woman to a woman of color colleague? The entitlement to me, my brain, and my expertise in such an off the cuff comment floored me. And people wonder why STEM has a reputation for being rife with problematic patterns.