Harvard Educational Review
  1. Fall 2008 Issue »

    Achievement as Resistance

    The Development of a Critical Race Achievement Ideology among Black Achievers

    Dorinda J. Carter, Michigan State University
    In this article, Dorinda Carter examines the embodiment of a critical race achievement ideology in high-achieving black students. She conducted a yearlong qualitative investigation of the adaptive behaviors that nine high-achieving black students developed and employed to navigate the process of schooling at an upper-class, predominantly white, suburban public high school while maintaining school success and a positive racial self-definition. Based on an analysis of interview data, participant observations, and field notes, Carter argues that these students’ conceptions of race and how race operates in their daily lives informs their constructions of achievement beliefs, attitudes, and self-definitions and informs their racialization and deracialization of the task of achieving at various times in the school context. Findings from this study indicate that students with strong racial and achievement identities may develop a critical race achievement ideology and enact resilient, adaptive behaviors in racially challenging contexts.

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    Dorinda J. Carter is an assistant professor in the Department of Teacher Education at Michigan State University, where she teaches courses on racial identity and academic achievement, critical race theory, urban education, and critical multiculturalism. Her research focuses on black student achievement in urban and suburban schools and on preparing teachers for culturally diverse student populations.
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    Fall 2008 Issue

    Abstracts

    Putting the “Development” in Professional Development
    Understanding and Overturning Educational Leaders’ Immunities to Change
    Deborah Helsing, Annie Howell, Robert Kegan, Lisa Lahey, Harvard Graduate School of Education
    Achievement as Resistance
    The Development of a Critical Race Achievement Ideology among Black Achievers
    Dorinda J. Carter, Michigan State University
    Unpacking the Placement of American Indian and Alaska Native Students in Special Education Programs and Services in the Early Grades
    School Readiness as a Predictive Variable
    Jacob Hibel, Susan C. Faircloth, The Pennsylvania State University, and George Farkas, University of California, Irvine
    Capturing Authenticity, Transforming Perception
    One Teacher’s Efforts to Improve Her Students’ Performance by Challenging Their Impressions of Self and Community
    William H. Marinell, Harvard Graduate School of Education

    Book Notes