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Understanding Complex Ecologies to Disentangle White Identity: It’s a Journey not a Destination

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The purpose of this paper is to reveal findings from two qualitative studies with White, female practitioners in the field of multicultural/special education that examined (a) how White women’s social, cultural, and professional identities and experiences influence their praxis with diverse families and students; and (b) promising practices in professional preparation which support White women in disentangling their own identities so that they can understand how complex ecologies of students and families intersect in educational contexts. Also discussed are implications for further inquiry with educators in understanding effective ways to assist Whites, and all educators, in disentangling the complex ecologies of identity in the process of moving toward educational equity for all students.


Whiteness, transformative learning, critical multiculturalism, teacher education
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2011

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  • Curriculum and Teaching is a bi-annual, refereed, international journal publishing original research. It uses a balanced and comparative perspective to consider curriculum design and development, evaluation, curriculum models, comparative studies in curriculum, innovation and policy, planning, and educational administration.
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