Race Matters in the Classroom

Wabash Center Blog Series: "Race Matters in the Classroom"

Posts from 2014 to 2017

This blog was started in response to the need for a forum on race and teaching theology and religion in the wake of the August 2014 shooting of Michael Brown and subsequent protests and police response in Ferguson, Missouri. We have purposively framed the blog more broadly than this single incident.

Teaching for racial and social justice, dismantling the structures of white privilege in academia, and diversifying the faculty, the students, and the canon, are abiding concerns of the Wabash Center and many of our colleagues in the WabashNation.

See as well: "Race Matters Teaching Tactics" -- Published by ARTS Online
Nine contributors to the Wabash Center's “Race Matters” blog contribute short teaching tactics they have used to help students engage difference in meaningful ways.

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While teaching at the University of Johannesburg in South Africa, I was traveling with a local colleague to an engagement.  Along the way, I ribbed him concerning some native cultural idiosyncrasy; at which point he turned to me in jest calling me “just another imperial gringo.”  Although a humorous retort ...

As I followed the #FergusonSyllabus twitter conversation just before this semester began, I considered ways to address race in a new way in my pastoral care course.  Unmasking structures of suffering and developing anti-racist pastoral care practices are already important to both my research and my pedagogy.  What is different ...

“The asceticism of teaching is the willingness to teach the students you have rather than the students you wish you had.” The rigor and conviction of Patricia O’Connell Killen’s claim about teaching as a practice has impacted my approach to the classroom more than anything else in the ...

Due to the racial and religious homogeneity of my institution, which is predominantly white and Christian (the University of Findlay, in rural Ohio), I have unconsciously focused on issues of greatest concern to my students, especially in the beginning of my teaching career – and this has not included race. This ...

The Ferguson story reminds me of the “Rashomon Effect,” named for late Japanese movie director Akira Kurosawa’s film Rashomon. In the film a crime witnessed by four individuals is described in four mutually contradictory ways. The Rashomon Effect is contradictory and often has opposing interpretations of the same event ...

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