Harvard Educational Review
  1. Spring 2012 Issue »

    Institutional Racist Melancholia

    A Structural Understanding of Grief and Power in Schooling

    Sabina Vaught
    In this article, Sabina Vaught undertakes the theoretical and analytical project of conceptually integrating Whiteness as property, a key structural framework of Critical Race Theory (CRT), and melancholia, a framework originally emerging from psychoanalysis. Specifically, Vaught engages Whiteness as property as an analytic tool to examine data from a larger ethnographic study of juvenile prison and schooling. She suggests that the psychoanalytic framework of melancholia enriches and complicates this analysis and proposes a theoretical move toward understanding structural affective processes in the scholarly effort to map schooling, race, and power. Throughout, Vaught illustrates the significance and utility of such an approach through multifaceted data-driven analyses.

    Click here to purchase this article.

    Sabina E. Vaught is an assistant professor of urban education at Tufts University, where she teaches courses on critical race theory, pedagogy, and the sociology of schooling in the Department of Education and the American Studies Program. Her scholarship examines the institutional contexts and dynamics of race, schooling, and power. Specifically, she has conducted institutional ethnographic studies in a large urban school district and in a state division of juvenile affairs and its prison schools. She is the author of Racism, Public Schooling and the Entrenchment of White Supremacy: A Critical Race Ethnography (SUNY Press, 2011).
  2. Share

    Spring 2012 Issue


    “A Few of the Brightest, Cleanest Mexican Children”
    School Segregation as a Form of Mundane Racism in Oxnard, California, 1900–1940
    David G. García, Tara J. Yosso, and Frank P. Barajas
    Changing Our Landscape of Inquiry for a New Science of Education
    Gary Thomas
    Institutional Racist Melancholia
    A Structural Understanding of Grief and Power in Schooling
    Sabina Vaught
    Symposium: By What Measure?
    Mapping and Expanding the Teacher Effectiveness Debate
    Contextual Influences on Inquiries into Effective Teaching and Their Implications for Improving Student Learning
    Anthony Bryk, Heather Harding, and Sharon Greenberg
    Having It Both Ways
    Building the Capacity of Individual Teachers and Their Schools
    Susan Moore Johnson
    Refocusing the Debate
    Assessing the Purposes and Tools of Teacher Evaluation
    John Papay
    A Collaborative Effort
    Peer Review and the History of Teacher Evaluations in Montgomery County, Maryland
    Jeremy P. Sullivan
    “We Are the Ones in the Classrooms—Ask Us!”
    Student Voice in Teacher Evaluations
    Boston Student Advisory Council

    Book Notes

    Our Difficult Sunlight
    Georgia A. Popoff and Quraysh Ali Lansana

    Call 1-800-513-0763 to order this issue.