Citation

Youthscapes: The politics of belonging for "Makwerekwere" (Black immigrant) youth in South African schools

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Abstract:

This qualitative study is framed within the global context of immigration and the ensuing debates around citizenship and belonging, inclusion and exclusion. Schools as social institutions are tasked with “absorbing” “integrating” and “educating” immigrant youth and can thus be seen as the primary sites where the politics of belonging and struggles over belonging and citizenship are waged. Drawing on the conceptual framework of “Youthscapes” and the theoretical framework of Critical Race Theory this paper engages with the contradictions inherent in schools and the manner in which national systems of education are implicated in constructing different ‘kinds’ of citizens and reproducing hierarchies of belongingness, even in their efforts to “welcome” and “include”. Findings indicate that intra-black racism took the form of social and academic exclusion; conflicting values, shared identities and psychosocial passing. First, the politics of belonging for Black immigrant students played out in two ways. Immigrant students felt a sense of belonging by virtue of their phenotypical likeness, however, the ‘youthscapes’ in which they found themselves where repressive systems of social control were enacted, emitted clear signals of their non-belongingness; the most stark example being that of language usage, both by indigenous students and teachers. Second, in an attempt to create a sense of belonging immigrant students forged a continental identity in the spirit of common ‘brotherhood’, but this attempt was counteracted by indigenous students who seemed to accentuate their ethnic identities. Third, immigrant students saw the host country as a site of contamination and shame and experienced “Person- Environment Misfit” as they did not conform to the norms and expectations of the South African environment. And fourth, immigrant student self-agency was twofold in nature: They not only wanted to improve their own condition, but there seemed to be an inherent drive to improve the human condition of South African students.

Word Count: {300}
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Association:
Name: 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society
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http://www.cies.us


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p492727_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Vandeyar, Saloshna. "Youthscapes: The politics of belonging for "Makwerekwere" (Black immigrant) youth in South African schools" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, May 01, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p492727_index.html>

APA Citation:

Vandeyar, S. , 2011-05-01 "Youthscapes: The politics of belonging for "Makwerekwere" (Black immigrant) youth in South African schools" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p492727_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: This qualitative study is framed within the global context of immigration and the ensuing debates around citizenship and belonging, inclusion and exclusion. Schools as social institutions are tasked with “absorbing” “integrating” and “educating” immigrant youth and can thus be seen as the primary sites where the politics of belonging and struggles over belonging and citizenship are waged. Drawing on the conceptual framework of “Youthscapes” and the theoretical framework of Critical Race Theory this paper engages with the contradictions inherent in schools and the manner in which national systems of education are implicated in constructing different ‘kinds’ of citizens and reproducing hierarchies of belongingness, even in their efforts to “welcome” and “include”. Findings indicate that intra-black racism took the form of social and academic exclusion; conflicting values, shared identities and psychosocial passing. First, the politics of belonging for Black immigrant students played out in two ways. Immigrant students felt a sense of belonging by virtue of their phenotypical likeness, however, the ‘youthscapes’ in which they found themselves where repressive systems of social control were enacted, emitted clear signals of their non-belongingness; the most stark example being that of language usage, both by indigenous students and teachers. Second, in an attempt to create a sense of belonging immigrant students forged a continental identity in the spirit of common ‘brotherhood’, but this attempt was counteracted by indigenous students who seemed to accentuate their ethnic identities. Third, immigrant students saw the host country as a site of contamination and shame and experienced “Person- Environment Misfit” as they did not conform to the norms and expectations of the South African environment. And fourth, immigrant student self-agency was twofold in nature: They not only wanted to improve their own condition, but there seemed to be an inherent drive to improve the human condition of South African students.

Word Count: {300}


Similar Titles:
Assimilation, but to what mainstream?: Immigrant youth and the multicultural politics of belonging at school

The Rising Influence of Black Immigrants on African American Politics

Development of youth capabilities, values and agency: Perspectives from South African academic and vocational secondary schools


 
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