Sep 24, 2020

Responding to Racism Series

Anti-Black Racism in Education: A Conversation of possibilities and challenges.

Thursday, September 24, 2020 3:00 PM4:30 PM

Featuring Dr. Njoki Wane
Professor at OISE/University of Toronto Chair of the Social Justice Education Department

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 697 3916 6581
Passcode: 121426


“History is not everything, but is a starting point. History is a clock that people use to tell their political and cultural time of day.  It is a compass they use to find themselves on the map of human geography.  It tells them where they are but, more importantly what they must be” (Henrik Clarke: 1997, p.38).

An analysis of scholarship and research on Canadian history reveals some omissions. In this conversation, I will be focusing on Anti-Black racism from a historical as well as contemporary standpoint.  A conversation on the writings about people of African ancestry will ultimately synthesize deeply contextualized knowledge.  It will generate a series of conversations and suggestions tailored towards making sense of the complexities of Blackness, as well as the reasons Anti-Black racism persists. Drawing on my past and current scholarship, particularly my most recent book: “From My Mother’s Back: A Journey from Kenya to Canada”; I will engage with the following questions:

  • What continues to hold together the systemic barriers to equitable employment, education health and economic opportunities for Black people/people African ancestry?
  • What informs systemic forms of Anti-Black racism?
  • What needs to be done to bring about sustainable transformation?

In examining these questions, I hope that together we can focus on real solutions not only to dismantle these oppressive structures, but to also consider and provide concrete ways to empower Black people, especially students, so they can carve academic and life pathways that speak to them.


Njoki Wane, PhD is currently serving as Chair in the Department of Social Justice Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE). She also served as Director, Center for Integrative Anti-Racism Studies (CIARS) at OISE from 2006 to 2014. Professor Wane is a recognized scholar in the areas of Black feminisms in Canada & Africa, African indigenous knowledges, Anti-colonial and decolonizing education and African women and spirituality.