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Anna Julia Cooper and Septima Poinsette Clark were two prominent late 19th- and early 20th-century educators. Cooper and Clark taught African American students in…
Anna Julia Cooper and Septima Poinsette Clark were two prominent late 19th- and early 20th-century educators. Cooper and Clark taught African American students in federally sanctioned, segregated schools in the South. Drawing on womanist thought as a theoretical lens, this chapter argues that Cooper and Clark’s intellectual thoughts on race, racism, education, and pedagogy informed their teaching practices. Influenced by their socio-cultural, historical, familial, and education, they implemented antioppressionist pedagogical practices as a way to empower their students and address the educational inequalities their students were subjected to in a highly racialized, violent, and repressive social order. Historical African American women educators’ social critiques on race and racism are rarely examined, particularly as they pertain to how their critiques influence their teaching practices. Cooper and Clark’s critiques about race and racism are pertinent to the story of education and racial empowerment during the Jim Crow era.
This introductory chapter frames the discussion of Black female teachers, and centers their experiences as the sole site for discussion and analysis. In addition, this…
This introductory chapter frames the discussion of Black female teachers, and centers their experiences as the sole site for discussion and analysis. In addition, this chapter provides an overview of the three sections of the book and the corresponding chapters. Within the pages of this volume, contributing authors discuss the historical and contemporary landscapes of Black female teachers, examine the underrepresentation of Black women in the US teacher workforce, as well as discuss innovative strategies to increase the recruitment and retention of Black female teachers in PK-12 classrooms. Ultimately, this chapter provides insight into the salience of Black female teachers in the diversification of the US teacher workforce. Moreover, highlighting implications and recommendations for a variety of educational stakeholders.