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Racialized Organizations in Racialized Space: How Socio-spatial Divisions Activate Symbolic Boundaries in a Charter School and a Public School

Racialized Organizations in Racialized Space: How Socio-spatial Divisions Activate Symbolic... Much research documents the systems of racism that undergird the rise of school choice policies and charter schools, racialized organizations that reproduce racial logics. While school choice policy gets enacted at the structural level to enable the formation of charter schools, policy also interacts with a localized neighborhood context where space must be allocated to the charter school. As race scholars show, space is itself racialized. How does this localized allocation of racial space shape intra-group dynamics in a predominantly Latinx neighborhood? Evidence for this study comes from two years of ethnographic participant-observation and informal conversations with parents in a traditional public school and a charter school in a large Northeastern city. Findings show how threats to the material boundaries of school space activate symbolic boundaries between parents from each school, drawing from racialized organizational identities of traditional public schools as representing neighborhood loyalty and anti-gentrification resistance positioned against charter schools as representing dominant whiteness, superiority, and social mobility. I conclude with a discussion of implications for broader studies of racialized space and organizations, culture, and collective action. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Sociology of Race and Ethnicity SAGE

Racialized Organizations in Racialized Space: How Socio-spatial Divisions Activate Symbolic Boundaries in a Charter School and a Public School

Sociology of Race and Ethnicity , Volume 8 (4): 15 – Oct 1, 2022

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Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© American Sociological Association 2022
ISSN
2332-6492
eISSN
2332-6506
DOI
10.1177/23326492221114811
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Much research documents the systems of racism that undergird the rise of school choice policies and charter schools, racialized organizations that reproduce racial logics. While school choice policy gets enacted at the structural level to enable the formation of charter schools, policy also interacts with a localized neighborhood context where space must be allocated to the charter school. As race scholars show, space is itself racialized. How does this localized allocation of racial space shape intra-group dynamics in a predominantly Latinx neighborhood? Evidence for this study comes from two years of ethnographic participant-observation and informal conversations with parents in a traditional public school and a charter school in a large Northeastern city. Findings show how threats to the material boundaries of school space activate symbolic boundaries between parents from each school, drawing from racialized organizational identities of traditional public schools as representing neighborhood loyalty and anti-gentrification resistance positioned against charter schools as representing dominant whiteness, superiority, and social mobility. I conclude with a discussion of implications for broader studies of racialized space and organizations, culture, and collective action.

Journal

Sociology of Race and EthnicitySAGE

Published: Oct 1, 2022

Keywords: race and space; schools; racialized organizations; symbolic interaction; culture

References