Racism, Resegregation, Decolonization—Race and Organizing in Education
[April, 2010. Please note that the deadline for this call has passed and it is currently inactive]
Special Issue Editor: Chris Chen
We are preparing a special issue of R e c l a m a t i o n s focusing on issues of race, decolonization, and campus organizing, with an emphasis on the volatility of race as a political signifier among individuals and groups working on the ground. Reclamations welcomes articles, reports, interviews, personal stories, photography, or any combination of the above.
There is no question that decolonizing our struggle must address the systematic erasure, the continuous exclusion and exploitation of communities of color on campus. For students and workers deeply committed to racial justice, the current crisis of education poses difficult questions about how much or how little racial politics have changed since the last mass upsurge of antiracist activism in the late 60s.
For many, the struggle to transform public education has been hobbled by a failure to respect existing student of color organizing efforts beyond the mainstream political spaces, efforts, and discourses of the movement. Students of color are building upon previous waves of struggle, and in particular the US third world feminist critique of “left” racism and sexism, to articulate new spatial and temporal conditions of emancipation. By sharpening boundaries between the inside and outside of existing organizational bodies, and by enacting exclusions which are both tactically necessary and politically generative, students of color are opening autonomous forums for dissent and mobilization.
For other students/workers of color and antiracist allies equally committed to racial justice, confronting racism and racial inequality on campus requires a focus on direct action and on challenging disciplinary hierarchies and regimes of institutional authority within existing student of color organizing spaces. These organizers confront entrenched beliefs about the racial homogeneity of various mobilizing groups—presumptions which have erased the presence of students of color who may not share the same political perspectives and tactical orientations as their peers.
Finally, we’d like to encourage submissions to R e c l a m a t i o n s from all students and educational workers of color organizing within their communities against the budget cuts, police violence, the prison-industrial system, and anti-immigrant violence.
In response to emerging hierarchies of status and relative privilege within communities of color, what are the perils and possibilities of speaking on behalf of people of color as a whole in the 21st century? What crucial political lessons can be drawn from the third world liberation and third world feminist struggles in the 60s and after? How are students and workers of color taking the lead to mobilize awareness, solidarity, and collective action among various communities while contributing to a critical understanding of racism in the present?
Deadline for submissions is April 15, 2010. Please send all inquiries and submissions to editors[at]reclamationsjournal.org