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Peace and Justice Book Circle - Algorithms of Oppression by Safiya Umoja Noble

Meeting Room 115
02/07/2019 - 6:30pm to 7:45pm

"A revealing look at how negative biases against women of color are embedded in search engine results and algorithms.

Run a Google search for “black girls”—what will you find? “Big Booty” and other sexually explicit terms are likely to come up as top search terms. But, if you type in “white girls,” the results are radically different. The suggested porn sites and un-moderated discussions about “why black women are so sassy” or “why black women are so angry” presents a disturbing portrait of black womanhood in modern society.

In Algorithms of Oppression, Safiya Umoja Noble challenges the idea that search engines like Google offer an equal playing field for all forms of ideas, identities, and activities. Data discrimination is a real social problem; Noble argues that the combination of private interests in promoting certain sites, along with the monopoly status of a relatively small number of Internet search engines, leads to a biased set of search algorithms that privilege whiteness and discriminate against people of color, specifically women of color."

Peace and Justice Book Circle meets monthly on the 1st Thursday of every month from 6:30 to 7:45p.m. at the Goodman South Madison Library, 2222 S Park St., Madison. Everyone is welcome to join the conversation if you are interested in the topic regardless of whether or not you have read the book.