Encountering Cultural Differences: Racism

The single incident of racism that I experienced was towards the beginning of the semester. While walking through the little shops between Wenceslas Square and Old Town Square, I stumbled into a tiny little toyshop filled with tourists. The young Czech man sitting at the register jumped up from behind the counter to see what I needed.

Before I could even finish describing exactly what I was looking for, he cut me off to say that they did not carry such an item. Then before I could turn to walk out of the store, I was surrounded by what seemed to be either his friends or co-workers. They were standing around me, staring, talking to one another in Czech and laughing. After a few minutes I just pushed through them and briskly walked out of the store. The other people in the store just kind of stood and watched as this happened, but no one said anything. I just tried to brush off the incident and not let it bother me; after all, I was not physically hurt.  I think my advice to other students of color would just be to always stay aware of your surroundings. – Patricia, Prague

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