Race in the Schoolyard
Negotiating the Color Line in Classrooms and Communities
Publication Year: 2003
Published by: Rutgers University Press
Series: Series in Childhood Studies
List of Figures and Tables
The intellectual work involved in a project such as this book is a collective enterprise. A number of people contributed in small and large ways. First and foremost I must thank the teachers, children, parents, and community members who let me into their classrooms, their lives, their homes, and their hearts. Were it not for their generosity I would have nothing to say. It is risky...
1. Examining the Color Line in Schools
Five years after leaving a teaching-credential program and a commitment to teach in urban public schools, I walked back into elementary schools to begin the research for this project. What drove me out of urban schools or perhaps what drove me into graduate school is captured by one moment, one day, in a third-grade...
2. There Is No Race in the Schoolyard: Color-Blind Ideology at Foresthills
Although much research has been done with regard to race in urban educational settings and in schools populated predominantly by students of color, much less work has examined how race operates in all-white or almostall- white settings. There is some wonderful research on multiracial or desegregated schools; these studies are nevertheless part...
3. Struggling with Dangerous Subjects: Race at West City Elementary
West City is a fairly small elementary school within an urban school district. It was neither one of the best nor one of the worst schools in the city, though few students from the surrounding white, middle-class neighborhood attended. It was at times a warm, tense, lively, disorganized, sad, and joyful place. As one teacher put it, “It is as fine as a dysfunctional family...
4. Breaking the Silence: Race, Culture, Language, and Power at Metro2
In demographic composition (including student body and staff ), curricular focus, location, and language policy, Metro2 had a complex racial and cultural landscape that many would define as a Latino space. Yet during my time at the school, more than one staff member referred to it as a “white school.” Why? What did they mean by “white”? This paradox lies at the heart of much...
5. Learning and Living Racial Boundaries: Constructing and Negotiating Racial Identity in School
One day during recess at Metro2 I observed an exchange that I recorded in my fieldnotes as follows: Lily and Kate, two fourth-grade girls, stand on the schoolyard talking. As part of a class presentation that morning, Lily had described her ethnic heritage as “Mexican American...
6. Schooling and the Social Reproduction of Racial Inequality
The previous chapter looked at the racialization process as it played out in the three school communities. Along with understanding the role schools play in the production of racial ideas, however, it is essential to understand the role of schools in the reproduction of racial inequality. Racial inequality in education, specifically racial gaps in achievement, have been receiving new attention. The black-white gap in particular...
7. Schools as Race-Making Institutions
Foresthills, West City, and Metro2 were very different educational institutions. They had different demographics, dynamics, and cultures. Yet, in each place, racial processes were at work. Each was what Thompson (1975) and Wacquant (2002) have labeled a “race-making institution.” As Wacquant elucidates, “They do not simply process an ethnoracial division that would somehow exist outside...
Appendix: Research Methods: Stories from the Field
In the beginning of their book Journeys through Ethnography, Lareau and Shultz (1996: 2) lament the scarcity of texts that show “how research actually gets done.” They argue that field researchers historically have engaged in a mix of what DeVault (1997) describes as “discretion and disclosure.” Either overly general or “filled with platitudes” (Lareau and Shultz 1996: 2), such work...
About the Author
Page Count: 264
Publication Year: 2003
Series Title: Series in Childhood Studies
Series Editor Byline: Edited by Myra Bluebond-Langner, Ph.D., Founder of Rutgers University Center for Children and Childhood Studies See more Books in this Series
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