Anne Hathaway has rallied against ''white privilege'' and called for change in American society following the death of black teenager Nia Wilson.

The 35-year-old Oscar winner was moved to speak out after learning of the death of 18-year-old Nia, who was allegedly stabbed in the neck by John Lee Cowell, 27, whilst travelling a subway train in Oakland, California, on Sunday night (22.07.18).

Nia died from her injuries following the assault and Cowell has now been charged with her murder.

Hathaway has now called for white Americans to evaluate their reaction and response to the tragedy and empathise with the Africa-American community.

In a lengthy Instagram post, she wrote: ''The murder of Nia Wilson- may she rest in the power and peace she was denied here - is unspeakable AND MUST NOT be met with silence. She is not a hash tag; she was a black woman and she was murdered in cold blood by a white man.

''White people- including me, including you- must take into the marrow of our privileged bones the truth that ALL black people fear for their lives DAILY in America and have done so for GENERATIONS. White people DO NOT have equivalence for this fear of violence.

''Given those givens, we must ask our (white)selves- how ''decent'' are we really? Not in our intent, but in our actions? In our lack of action? Peace and prayers and JUSTICE for Nia and the Wilson family xx [sic]''

Hathaway's post comes amid criticism of US police officers over the way they investigate murders of black victims.

Following Nia's death, police chief Carlos Rojas described the stabbing as ''the most vicious'' attack he had seen in his nearly 30-year career.

Rojas said: ''It basically happened at the snap of the fingers, at the drop of the pin.

''It's more reminiscent of a prison yard assault. They do their attack so quickly that before anybody can really react, the person takes off running.''