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Vol. 5 No. 4 (2022): Critical Phenomenology, Racial Justice, and Radical Imagination

Racial Politics and the Postracial University

  • Uzma Jamil
February 9, 2023


The university is situated within white colonial projects that underpin the nation in the UK, US and Canada. While the institutional whiteness of universities reflects these structural conditions of whiteness in society, it is also more flexible and dynamic in the present, reflecting both national and transnational racial politics. The Black Lives Matter protests in the summer of 2020 and student movements calling on universities to be accountable for their ties to slavery and colonialism have made this connection visible. In this context, this paper examines how racial politics affects postracial whiteness in the university, using two cases from a British and Canadian university, respectively, and drawing on Sara Ahmed’s (2007;, 2019) work on whiteness and the university and David Theo Goldberg’s (2015) theorization of the postracial.