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Critical Race Studies in Education Association (CRSEA) 

  2023 Theme & Call for Papers 

Sankofa: Rooted in history, planting for the future 

Chicago, IL

Pre-Conference Date: October 25, 2023  -----   Conference Dates: October 26-27, 2023

 Deadline: May 15, 2023

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The 2023 CRSEA Conference theme is Sankofa, which is a Ghanaian principle that means “to go back and get it.” It translates to san – to return, ko – to go, fa – to get/seek and represents the importance of learning from the past to improve the future. It was chosen as this year’s theme to encourage us to approach our use of Critical Race Theory in a similar way – to return to the roots of CRT in order to improve the present and future. The banning of CRT and conversations about racial inequities in educational spaces reaffirms the imminent necessity of our work. It also highlights the importance of speaking truth to power, which we do by focusing on what CRT is, instead of what it is not. This is achieved by using the principles set forth by the founders of CRT to ground our analyses of systemic racism and other systems of oppression that still negatively impact marginalized communities both domestically and abroad.

For example, Bell (1992) argued that racism was a permanent fixture in the United States and Delgado (1995) maintained that it was a normal part of American society. As such, Ladson-Billings (1998) asserted that it was our responsibility to unmask and expose racism in its various permutations. 25 years later, her charge remains, and CRT is the theoretical framework that allows us to do. We must use our work to counter the false narratives of a post-racial society where racism no longer exists and colorblindness is the ideal. The truth is that racism continues to permeate throughout the educational system, and two of the goals of CRT, as identified by Parker and Lynn (2002), are to argue for the eradication of racial subjugation and to draw important relationships between race and other axes of domination such as sexism, classism, and ableism. The use of our research to expose the truth must be intentional and unapologetic.

Another goal of CRT is to present storytelling and narratives as valid approaches through which to examine race and racism in the law and in society. Parker (1998) argued that “the use of narrative in critical race theory adds to the racial dimension and purpose of qualitative inquiry and ethnographic research in education” (p. 50). As such, we welcome proposals that use storytelling and (counter)narratives to center the experiential knowledge of marginalized communities, which is legitimate and crucial to the examination of the impact of racism in education.

We welcome proposals that are guided by tenets of CRT including:
  • Racial realism
  • Interest convergence
  • Whiteness as property
  • Intersectionality
  • (Counter)storytelling
  • Critique of (neo)liberalism
We also welcome proposals that are informed by other critical theoretical frameworks including (but not limited to) Critical Race Feminism, Critical Race Praxis,  DisCrit, TribalCrit, LatCrit, and LangCrit.


Submission Information

We invite proposals of no more than 500 words directly connected to the call and conference foci. We strongly encourage interactive presentations/creative proposals that identify, uncover, challenge and resist examples of systemic racism/white supremacy in the pursuit of social justice within and surrounding educational, political and community environments. In addition to addressing the theme of the conference, proposals should address one of the following relevant themes: 

1)     Imperialism and Colonialism and its Impact on K -12 Youth. Governmental policies and educational policies that are intimately linked to the problematic goal of assimilation.

2)     Youth Resistance and Radicalism (P-20): Relevant submissions include discussion, analysis/research centering the experiential knowledge and voices of youth of color, advancing knowledge of pedagogies of resistance/organizing amongst, and in relation to youth of color in schools, communities, etc.

3)     Community Driven Politics: Relevant submissions include grassroots organizing and political education in various forms.

4)     Spatial Geography’s role in racial realism: Relevant submissions include analysis/research highlighting the various manifestations of racism/white supremacy functioning in different geographical places and spaces; specifically, the consideration of connections amongst a myriad of topics/movements (e.g. coalitions amongst groups such as Black Lives Matter and Indigenous peoples; recent Black-Asian solidarity organizing happening in Oakland, CA and elsewhere).

5)     Identity and/or Respectability Politics: Relevant submissions include analysis/research that centers Testimonios and Storytelling from a myriad of disciplines/fields and their connection to, and influence on political and/or educational discourse and praxis from various positionalities shaping politics and education.

6)     Political Economies of Higher Education: Relevant submissions include a discussion/analysis of the manifestations, intersections, and nuances of Race, Class, Gender, Sexuality, Language, Ability, Citizenship, etc. within institutions of higher education.

7)     Transformational PoliticsRelevant submissions include a discussion/analysis of Teacher Pedagogy and Praxis; interdisciplinary and discipline-specific proposals welcomed.

Proposals will be evaluated on the following:

Technical Quality: The ideas addressing theory, practices, and/or methods in critical race studies in education are clear.

AnalysisThe proposal clearly demonstrates the author is centering race as the primary mode of analysis, with key principles, concepts and methods connected to critical theories of race, including, but not limited to critical race theory. There are clear linkages between the information and the question/topic under consideration.

Innovativeness and ImpactProposal submitted has the potential to introduce and/or promote the development of new ideas, practices, methods, praxis and/or the acquisition of new skills and knowledge for conference attendees.

NOTE: Accepted proposals can be placed on a panel or roundtable session depending on the number of proposals received within each thematic strand.

*Please note that due to limited presentation slots, we cannot accept proposals for formats such as panels or symposia. In addition, we will not review submissions from authors whose names appear on more than two (2) research proposals as sole or lead/first-author. We ask that each paper is only submitted to one topic stand. CRSEA will not request for you to submit a full paper prior to the conference, though we hope that your proposal submission will eventually become a publication.

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 *Below, you will find resources cited in the call as well as others that may be helpful in the creation of your proposal.

Bell, D. (1992). Faces at the bottom of the well. New York: Basic Books.

Bell, D. (1987). And we are not saved: The elusive quest for racial justice. New York: Basic Books.

Bell, D. (1980). Brown and the interest-convergence dilemma. In D. Bell (Ed.), Shades of Brown: New perspectives on school desegregation (pp. 90-106). New York: Teachers College Press.

Bonilla-Silva, E. (2018). Racism without racists: Color-blind racism and the persistence of racial inequality in America. Rowman & Littlefield.

Crenshaw, K. (1988). Race, reform, and retrenchment: Transformation and legitimation in anti-discrimination law. Harvard Law Review, 101(7), 1331-1387.

Crenshaw, K., Gotanda, N., Peller, G., & Thomas, K . (Eds.) (1995). Critical race theory: The key writings that formed the movement. New York: Free Press.

Delgado, R. (Ed.). (1995). Critical race theory: The cutting edge. Philadelphia: Temple University Press.

Delgado, R. (1991). Brewer’s plea: Critical thoughts on a common cause. Vanderbilt Law Review, 44, 1-14.

Delgado, R. (1990). When a story is just a story: Does voice really matter? Virginia Law Review, 76, 95-111.

Delgado, R. (1989). Symposium: Legal storytelling. Michigan Law Review, 87, 2073.

Ladson-Billings, G. (1998). Just what is critical race theory and what's it doing in a nice field like education? International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 11(1), 7-24.

Ladson-Billings, G. (1995). “But that’s just good teaching!” The case for culturally relevant teaching. Theory Into Practice, 34, 159-165.

Ladson-Billings, G., & Tate, W. F. (1995). Toward a critical race theory of education. Teachers College Record, 97, 47-68.

Omi, M., & Winant, H. (1993). Racial formation in the United States from the 1960s to the 1990s (2nd ed.). New York: Routledge.

Parker, L. (1998). 'Race is race ain't': An exploration of the utility of critical race theory in qualitative research in education. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 11(1), 43-55.

Parker, L. & Lynn, M. (2002). What’s race got to do with it? Critical race theory’s conflicts with and connections to qualitative research methodology and epistemology. Qualitative Inquiry, 8(1), 7-22.

Solórzano, D., Ceja, M., & Yosso, T. (2000). Critical race theory, racial microaggressions, and campus racial climate: The experiences of African American college students. Journal of Negro Education, 69(1), 60–73.

Solórzano, D. G., & Yosso, T. J. (2002). Critical race methodology: Counter-storytelling as an analytical framework for education research. Qualitative Inquiry, 8(1), 23–44.

Yosso, T. J. (2006). Critical race counterstories along the Chicana/Chicano educational pipeline. Routledge

Yosso, T. J. (2005). Whose culture has capital? A critical race theory discussion of community cultural wealth. Race Ethnicity and Education, 8(1), 69–91.