The Five Stages Of The Microaggression Process Model

709 Words 3 Pages
The author identifies the “Microaggression Process Model” and each of the five steps that occurs when one receives a microaggression. Phase 1 is the incident in which the microaggression occurs, and can happen in subtle, blatant, or within symbolic incidents by the environment or an individual/individuals (69). These can also occur in verbal or nonverbal forms (71). Phase 2 involves the questioning of the incident, in which the victim wonders if the assault was intentional and if bigotry actually existed within the aggression (72). Many people often try to justify the microaggression, or deny it, as if fearing the truth. Phrase 3 involves “strong cognitive, behavioral, and emotional reactions” from the microaggression. This is described as …show more content…
Another dynamic of this phase is called the “sanity check which affirms the experience, acknowledges other shared experiences, and helps prevent subtle expressions of bigotry. Self-empowerment occurs during this era as well because it shifts the blame from the victim to the assaulter and does not deny the victim’s feelings of offense. The authors also claims that the victims attempt to “rescue the offenders” during this phase and acknowledges their ignorance, as if treating them like victims, and perhaps not even experiencing feelings of offense by them. They work towards helping the dominant group understand who the real enemy is. Phase 4 involves the meanings and symbolism behind these aggressions, one of these messages being that the victim “does not belong” and that they are not normal, compared to the dominant group (77). Other messages that the victim feels are behind the microaggressions are that they are cognitively inferior, are unable to be trusted, and that everyone in that marginalized group is all the same …show more content…
These effects are not just short lived but can have serious, long term effects on those targeted, in which they adopted a process in coping with these as a means for survival and sanity. This is also important for those who may be guilty of producing microaggressions to understand because often they are only concerned with their own psychological feelings, such as feelings of guilt or shame when these aggressions are realized, but fail to put themselves in others’ shoes. If they do recognize the victims’ reactive feelings, such as anger, they are only able to relate this to “overreaction” and not stemming from true, genuine offense. The recognition of this model represents just how prominent and active microaggressions occur. It is unfortunate that this model may have been created to help victims cope and overcome these type of assaults that occur as a result of bigotry, instead of a model created for those to avoid using microaggressions and to increase awareness of their own utilization of them. This may unfortunately shift the responsibility from the offender to the victim, as if they need to be responsible for these occurrences and be in control of their reactions, despite

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