White Spaces Network

Critical race pedagogy

4 Mar 2013
University of Leeds, University of Cape Town, University of Witwatersrand


In this virtual seminar, we discussed critical race pedagogy in theory and in practice. Many of us have had experiences – good, bad, and ugly – with the delivery of critical race theory in teaching and learning environments. This session provided an opportunity for participants to share questions, experiences, challenges, and issues that have arisen as students encounter concepts such as power, oppression, privilege, difference, and Otherness in relation to race and racism.

Article discussed:

Davis and Steyn (2012), Teaching social justice: Reframing some common pedagogical assumptions. Perspectives in Education, Volume 30(4).

Co-author Danya Davis (University of Witwatersrand) will briefly discuss the article to kick off the discussion.

Guiding questions

  1. How do broader national contexts and discourses on race inform critical race teaching?
  2. What kinds of pedagogical assumptions inform our teaching on race and whiteness?
  3. How does this pedagogical context – its assumptions, values and methodologies – shift or differ across disciplinary boundaries?
  4. How far can and/or should educators challenge students’ problematic beliefs and discourses? What are the risks of challenging too much and/or too little? What are your experiences and learning in finding or struggling to find this tough balance?



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