After the Glow: Race ambivalence and other educational prognoses

Educational Philosophy and Theory 43 (6):675-698 (2011)
Abstract
The Right has a long history of questioning the importance of race analysis. Recently, the conceptual and political status of race has come under increased scrutiny from the Left. Bracketing the language of ‘race’ has meant that the discourse of skin groups remains at the level of abstraction and does not speak to real groups as such. As a descriptor, race essentializes identity as if skin color were a reliable way to perceive one's self and group as well as others, and questions the viability of a social struggle based on race. In other words, race is not real and discourses that insist on its objective status are ensnared in reification. The response—equally from the Left—has been to reassert the centrality and changing dynamics of race in education and society. They argue that we need to develop more, rather than less, complex discourses on race. Orientations that attempt to discredit race analysis are therefore unable to dismantle the racial system because they refuse its significance as an autonomous system of interpellations. In other words, race is real. This essay appraises the debate within the Left about the status of race, their projections about the future of race, and the kind of struggle they promote in order to realize a society freed from the chains of racism
Keywords critical race theory  anti‐racism  critical social theory  post‐race theory
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References found in this work BETA
Jacques Derrida (1985). Racism's Last Word. Critical Inquiry 12 (1):290-299.
R. Dyer (1999). White (Pp. 457-468). In Jessica Evans & Stuart Hall (eds.), Visual Culture: The Reader. Sage Publications in Association with the Open University.

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