Complicating Blackness in Teacher Education: Race, Intersectionality, and the Lives of Black Teachers Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • March 22, 2019
  • Brown, Corliss C.
    • Affiliation: School of Education
  • In recent years, there has been an increasing focus on preparing educators to teach for social justice. Black teachers have been highlighted for their historical and present work with black students, eliminating educational inequities seemingly through their race consciousness and activism. The literature on black teachers has treated them as a single identity, often failing to attend to the multiple identities (including race, class, and gender) and intersectional lives of these teachers. There is frequently little discussion regarding the identity of black teachers beyond them being categorized as black, leaving teacher educators with an incomplete image of black teachers. Through using life history methodology and critical discourse analysis, this dissertation unpacks the identity and experiences of three black teachers, reflecting the following ideal types: black teacher as colorblind, black teacher as savior, and black teacher as activist. An intersectional framework is used to understand how the social categories of race, class and gender play out in the lives of these teachers, specifically in reference to their understanding of discrimination and privilege within each category. The findings suggest that studies on black teachers need to be further contextualized in order to understand the meaning of black for each teacher. Ultimately, the findings suggest that teacher educators must find more responsive ways to incorporate the multiple identities of all teachers as they prepare teachers for social justice in order to help teachers meet the needs of all their students regardless of background.
Date of publication
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Glazier, Jocelyn
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Graduation year
  • 2013

This work has no parents.