Educators across the nation are engaged in well-meaning efforts to address diversity in schools given the current context of NCLB, Race to the Top, and the associated pressures of standardization and accountability. Through rich ethnographic accounts of teachers in two demographically different secondary schools in the same urban district, Angelina E. Castagno investigates how whiteness operates in ways that thwart (and sometimes co-opt) even the best intentions and common sense—thus resulting in educational policies and practices that reinforce the status quo and protect whiteness rather than working toward greater equity.
Whereas most discussions of the education of diverse students focus on the students and families themselves, Educated in Whiteness highlights the structural and ideological mechanisms of whiteness. In schools, whiteness remains dominant by strengthening and justifying the status quo while simultaneously preserving a veneer of neutrality, equality, and compassion. Framed by critical race theory and whiteness studies, this book employs concepts like interest convergence, a critique of liberalism, and the possessive investment in whiteness to better understand diversity-related educational policy and practice.
Although in theory most diversity-related educational policies and practices are intended to bring about greater equity, too often in practice they actually maintain, legitimate, and so perpetuate whiteness. Castagno not only sheds light on this disconnect between the promises and practices of diversity-related initiatives but also provides insight into why the disconnect persists.
- rightsPortions of chapter 2 were previously published in "Making Sense of Multicultural Education: A Synthesis of the Literature," Multicultural Perspectives 11, no. 1 (2009): 43–48, and in "Multicultural Education and the Protection of Whiteness," American Journal of Education 120, no. 1 (2013). Portions of chapter 3 were previously published in "I Don't Want to Hear That! Legitimating Whiteness through Silence in Schools," Anthropology and Education Quarterly 39, no. 3 (2008): 314–33. Portions of chapter 4 were previously published in "Common Sense Understandings of Equality and Social Change: A Critical Race Theory Analysis of Liberalism at Spruce Middle School," International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education 22, no. 6 (2009): 755–68.
Copyright 2014 by the Regents of the University of Minnesota
- publisherUniversity of Minnesota Press
- publisher placeMinneapolis, MN
- restrictionsAll rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publisher.
- rights holderRegents of the University of Minnesota