When Race Breaks Out: Conversations about Race and Racism in College Classrooms

When Race Breaks Out: Conversations about Race and Racism in College Classrooms

When Race Breaks Out: Conversations about Race and Racism in College Classrooms

When Race Breaks Out: Conversations about Race and Racism in College Classrooms

Synopsis

"When Race Breaks Out is a guide for instructors who want to promote more honest and informed conversations about race and racism. Based on the author's personal practice and interviews with students and faculty from a variety of disciplines, this book combines personal memoirs, advice, teaching ideas, and lively stories from college classrooms. A unique « insider's guide to the main ideas, definitions, and opinions about race helps instructors answer students' questions and anticipate their reactions, both to the material and to each other. An annotated bibliography of over 150 articles, books, and videos with recommendations for classroom use is also included.

Excerpt

Since the 1970s, a small number of dedicated university instructors have been promoting honest talk about race and racism in their classrooms. Some are white; many more are instructors of color. Whether their academic backgrounds are in History or Psychology or Anthropology or Education or any other subject, they must somehow address great gaps in their students' knowledge: the histories of multicultural America, the psychology of racism and race relations, the sociology of racialized institutions, the biology and anthropology of scientific racism. Semester after semester, they have worked over this same ground, explaining how racist ideas and assumptions from our nation's past continue to be perpetuated, often unconsciously, by both whites and people of color. They have gained expertise moderating inflammatory—or painfully silent—classroom discussions, speaking from their own experiences and family histories and encouraging students to do the same. They have watched many white students turn from disbelief to astonishment to great sadness as they discover what whites have done to people of color in the past and how these practices continue to poison our relationships today. Patiently and gently, they have helped students of color face their own doubts and fears, their internalized hatreds, their daily encounters with racism. The experience can be an exhausting one for students, for it takes a great deal of energy to question the way one has been taught to make sense of the world and begin to see that other interpretations are possible. But for faculty, especially faculty of color, the work can be debilitating. For not only are they bringing out students' emotionally charged beliefs and feelings, but the very subject of discussion is the white students' negative reactions to people, real and imagined, who look very much like the professors standing before them. Handling this situation with compassion and grace drains the emotional and spiritual forces and threatens one's physical well being. "It . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.