The American Conservative ascribes some claims to Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC):

Look at this stunning exhibition from the website of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture. This is from its web page about the menace of “Whiteness”. Aside from the anti-white stereotypes here, notice the inadvertently anti-black insanity: things like hard work, being on time, cause and effect, “rational thinking,” respect for authority, politeness — all these things, according to the museum, are manifestations of “whiteness.”

The Sun makes a similar claim.

They are apparently referring to an infographic titled Aspects and Assumptions of Whiteness & White Culture in the United States, which has NMAAHC at the top ([Smithsonian] National Museum of African American History and Culture). Reading through it can certainly give some bad impressions, or at least yield a lot of confusion. As such, this question is not about the infographic's content.

The infographic doesn't seem to be on the Smithsonian’s website nor do more mainstream sources quote them.

Did the Smithsonian ever publish this infographic, either on it's site or in print somewhere else?


1 Answer 1


Yes, the graphic did appear on a Smithsonian web page titled Whiteness.

Thanks to Wikipedia, we have a date and location for the graphic, allowing me to locate it in an Archive.org snapshot of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture (NMAAHC) website. It was not live for too many days, and certainly is no longer there: the page says it was removed because it “does not contribute to the productive discussion we had intended”.

While NMAAHC created the graphic, the text is copied verbatim from an older source: “Some Aspects and Assumptions of White Culture in the United States,” by Judith H. Katz, ©1990.

The graphic appears to be faithfully reproduced in the news articles, with “Hard work is the key to success” being listed under “Protestant Work Ethic”, for example.

  • 2
    The introductory text in the infographic "White dominant culture ... people of color" seems to be new. The 1990 source said "While different individuals might not practice or accept all of these traits, they are common characteristics of most U.S. White people most of the time."
    – Henry
    Jul 29, 2020 at 11:35
  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. Please feel free to continue discussion about the graphic's words there. SE's chat engine is awesome for sharing ideas and thoughts. Comments are meant for improving posts, not discussing their contents.
    – user11643
    Jul 30, 2020 at 21:38

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