The project was a Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR), theatrical investigation into whiteness. During the 2012-2013 school year, nearly 40 mostly white 9th-12th Grade students in a first-ring, suburban high school outside of St. Paul investigated whiteness. They researched whiteness in the fall, wrote a play in the winter, and produced it as the school's spring play.Using YPAR (Appadurai, 2006; Cammarota & Fine, 2008; Guishard, 2009; Morrell 2008) in concert with playbuilding pedagogies (Boal, 1979; Mandell & Wolf, 2003; Norris, 2009; Sawyer, 2003; Zipes, 2004), the students used data they generated in their research to inform their play.This project was designed from a critical whiteness perspective. Instead of using traditional white privilege pedagogy, white high school students participated in a teaching project that both acknowledged privilege and inquired into organizing logics of white supremacy. Students worked towards anti-racist action through the collaborative construction of a theatrical text.This dissertation presents the possibility and limitations of centering whiteness as a category of analysis in a high school context, the nature of sharing power between a high school teacher and a YPAR collective, and the implications of white people using a critical whiteness perspective to make sense of whiteness. It will argue that Thadeka's (1999) theorization of white shame should caution educators to approach whiteness work with nuance and care.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. May 2014. Major: Education, Curriculum and Instruction. Advisor: 1 computer file (PDF); iii, 319 pages, appendices A-F.
Tanner, Samuel Jaye.
A Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR), theatrical inquiry into whiteness.
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