The American Sociologist

, Volume 38, Issue 2, pp 159-177

First online:

Antiracist Education in Theory and Practice: A Critical Assessment

  • Jack NiemonenAffiliated withDepartment of Anthropology & Sociology, University of South Dakota Email author 

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“Antiracist Education in Theory and Practice: A Critical Assessment” As a set of pedagogical, curricular, and organizational strategies, antiracist education claims to be the most progressive way today to understand race relations. Constructed from whiteness studies and the critique of colorblindness, its foundational core is located in approximately 160 papers published in peer-reviewed journals in the past 15 years-identified through a comprehensive search of Academic Premier Search, EBSCOMegaFile, Education Abstracts, JSTOR, and SOCIndex. A critical assessment of these papers concludes that antiracist education is not a sociologically grounded, empirically based account of the significance of race in American society. Rather, it is a morally based educational reform movement that embodies the confessional and redemptive modes common in evangelical Protestantism. Inherently problematic, whether or not antiracist education achieves broader acceptance is open to debate.


Antiracist education Theory and practice Critical assessment