Anti-racism, Antiracist Teaching, Pedagogy, Tokenism


In this reflective essay I uncover the difficulties Black teacher educators have instructing a predominately white preservice student body about antiblackness without becoming complicit in antiblackness. So often we focus on students as the token representative of their racial/gender/sexual/linguistic identity; however, we teacher educators are also routinely the “only” in a room of white faces, often as students’ first Black professor. We therefore bear the burden of introducing students to whiteness while wondering if our Blackness is being viewed in opposition to, despite, or because of whiteness. How do I convince them of their future students’ humanity without sacrificing my own? This is but one of the questions I interrogate as I reveal the tension between creating empathy and understanding, while also disrupting the white gaze. In sharing my curriculum, assignments, and instructional strategies against the backdrop of my own emotions tied to my Black identity, I hope to build unity with other teacher educators whose Blackness becomes transactional in white spaces.



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Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.

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