aboriginals and racism

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Educating for Anti-Racism: Producing and Reproducing Race and Power in a University Classroom

Christopher C. Sonn a
Victoria University
Melbourne, Australia

Author Posting. (c) 'Copyright Holder', 2008.
This is the author's version of the work. It is posted here by permission of 'Copyright Holder' for personal use, not for redistribution.
The definitive version was published in Race Ethnicity and Education, Volume 11 Issue 2, July 2008.
doi:10.1080/13613320802110266 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/13613320802110266) www.informaworld.com


School of Psychology,Victoria University, PO Box 14428, Melbourne City MC, Melbourne

Australia, 8001.
Email: Christopher.Sonn@vu.edu.au


In this paper I explore some of the issues associated with teaching about race, culture and ethnicity in a psychology program. These curriculum initiatives are part of a broader agenda of raising awareness about racialised oppression and exclusion and contributing to the development of ways of researching and practicing psychology that are transformative and culturally sensitive. I overview the broader context and describe our subject and the guiding principles. This is followed by a description and analysis of two events in the classroom that illustrate the ways in which students differentially respond to the challenges posed by writings that challenge taken for granted understandings of race. Part of the analysis shows that students can often engage in the reproduction of oppressive practices and invest in whiteness. It is suggested that more than single semester subjects are required to promote and support the development of critical capacities for anti-racism practice.

Keywords: Critical Pedagogy, Whiteness, Racism, Indigenous Australians, Psychology

Educating for Anti-Racism: Producing and Reproducing Race and Power in a University Classroom

Recent statistics paint a picture of Australia as very diverse culturally, and linguistically....
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