Ingrates at the Gates: People of Color in Higher Education Talk Back
Edited by Patti Duncan (Women's Studies Department, Portland State
University) and Kimberly Springer (Black Studies Department, Portland
We seek papers that engage the personal and political experiences of
people of color in academia, for inclusion in an interdisciplinary
edited anthology. U.S. Academic institutions are engaged more and more
in discussions about "diversity" and "multiculturalism." Yet, even as
sites for higher education work to transform curricula and strive for
greater diversity among students and faculties, little is done to create
safe, inviting environments for people of color in the academy.
Instead, people of color often find ourselves tokenized, objectified,
and exploited within higher education.
Asked to represent all people of our racial and ethnic groups, isolated and marginalized within our various departments, stereotyped according to racist myths, and victimized by both overt and subtle forms of institutional and
interpersonal racism and oppression, many of us find ourselves
increasingly at odds with the university culture. When we explicitly
challenge such forms of oppression, we are often deemed "ungrateful."
In the face of assumptions that we are "only here because of affirmative
action," we attempt to preserve our integrity and our energy using
multiple forms of resistance, both direct and subversive.
This anthology seeks to document the experiences of people of color,
frustrated by tokenism, white supremacy, Eurocentrism, racism,
heterosexism, sexism, ablism, and a host of other forms of
discrimination. At the same time, we also seek to produce a "guidebook"
for future scholars of color, complete with examinations of the
strategies that may or may not have worked for us in varying contexts.
Thus, we seek jargon-free theoretical analyses, personal essays,
collaborative writings, and poetry about your experiences as "ingrates
at the gate."
Discrimination in admissions; as undergraduate and graduate students;
on the job market; in tenure-track v. fixed-term/adjunct positions; in
promotion and tenure; and at all stages of an academic career.
Strategies for dealing with inappropriate interpersonal
discrimination, including racist assumptions and behavior from
professors, colleagues, students; racialized sexual harassment; unfair
demands and expectations.
The lack of adequate mentoring available to students of color; and the
difficulty in balancing mentoring and career imperatives, for faculty of
Confronting tokenization (especially when we are expected to serve on
multiple committees, for the purpose of "diversifying" them).
Coping with isolation, being the "only one," and developing strategies
for community building.
The extremely low hire and tenure rates for faculty of color in U.S.
Developing pedagogies to address racism and other forms of oppression;
and/or confronting expectations that we will rely on certain political
or personal frameworks because of our racial/ethnic identities.
Discrimination and teaching evaluations; hostility from students and
colleagues who assume that we are only where we are because of
Distinct stereotypes and forms of oppression and discrimination we may
face, based on our distinct racial/ethnic identities, which sometimes
result in people of color being pitted against other people of color.
The effects of internalized racism, on our parts and/or on the parts
of our professors, our colleagues, and/or our students.
Anonymous submissions will not be accepted, but other methods of
confidentiality will be respected.
Please direct inquiries to the email address provided, and send completed papers to the following address by March 1, 2002.
Patti Duncan / Ingrates at the Gate
Women's Studies Department
469 Neuberger Hall
Portland State University
P.O. Box 751
Portland, OR 97207
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