Theorizing Race in the Context of Learning to Teach
by Luann M. Duesterberg — 1999
Given the context of schools and society, in which the meanings of race so deeply impact social arrangements and social interactions, it imperative for pre-service teachers and teacher educators to engage in efforts to theorize race and understand how constructions of race affect our actions and decisions. Requiring that student teachers be committed to teaching every child in their classrooms demands that pre-service teachers think through how they understand themselves and others through race in a society in which race is the both the vehicle through which oppression is accomplished and the vehicle through which groups rally to combat that oppression. Thinking through race is complicated by the various theoretical conceptions of race that have grounded race relations in this country for the last three hundred years. Arguing that race is neither purely ideological nor purely essential but grounded in socio-historical ideologies and performances, this author uses this conceptualization of race both to interpret the practices of student teachers and to ground her own practice as a teacher educator.
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