In 1907, thousands of white workers marched into and attacked businesses and apartments owned, worked, and lived in by Chinese men. Historians have been divided on the cause of this event. Some say it was because whites were duped by cunning capitalists who set one group of workers against another during a time of economic downturn and spreading joblessness. Others say it demonstrated these white workers’ identification and commitment to whiteness and making western Canada a “white man’s country.” Neither of these explanations addresses the underlying problem of why white workers would participate in the racialization of Chinese people, and themselves, nor what they get out of identifying with ‘whiteness’.
What differences do you see between Barnholden’s explanation for why the 1907 riot happened and the explanation of white worker’s racism by thinkers from the other files i posted? (Ignatiev and dubois)
Explain the differences between these explanations and the consequences of Barnholden’s explanation for class struggle.
Create your own argument explaining the riot, using the ideas about the “wages of whiteness”

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