Black Lives Matter in US Schools

Race, Education, and Resistance

Edited by Boni Wozolek

Subjects: Education, Social Context Of Education, Social Movements, African American Studies, Queer Studies
Series: SUNY series, Critical Race Studies in Education
Hardcover : 9781438489179, 228 pages, July 2022
Paperback : 9781438489186, 228 pages, January 2023

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Table of contents

Introduction: From Cooper and Woodson to Schools Today: BLM and American Schools
Boni Wozolek

1. Revisiting Claims about #BlackLivesMatter: Toward an Equity Literate Fact-Checking Approach
Sherick A. Hughes

2. From the Mouths of the Lives that Matter
Ngozi Williams

3. The Summer of 2016 in Baton Rouge: Riots, Levees, and Community Uplift When Black Lives Matter Comes to Town
Roland W. Mitchell

4. Black Theory Matters: AntiBlackness, White Logics, and the Limits of Diversity Research Paradigms
Kirsten T. Edwards

5. Education as if Black Lives Mattered: A Critical (and Crucial) Literacies Approach
Yolanda Sealey-Ruiz, Marcelle Haddix, and Cluny Lavache

6. Getting Schooled: A Curriculum of Lying, Choking, and Dying
Walter S. Gershon

7. Notes from a City on Fire: The Mattering of Black Lives and the End of Retrenchment
David Omotoso Stovall

8. Letter to Rev. Dr. Pauli
Reagan P. Mitchell

9. Democracy in the Break: A Riff in Support of the Movement for Black Lives
Denise Taliaferro Baszile

Lester K. Spence


A powerful anthology on the role of curricula in perpetuating—and resisting—oppression.


Winner of the 2023 Outstanding Book Award presented by the Division B of the American Educational Research Association

Black Lives Matter in US Schools critically examines the relationship between schooling and sociocultural abolitionist movements such as #BlackLivesMatter. Aligning with a long history of education scholars who have insisted on the enmeshed nature of schools and society, the book addresses the role of various forms of curricula that perpetuate anti-Blackness while simultaneously shaping Black ways of being, knowing, and doing. While its focus tends toward issues of normalized violence, Black Lives Matter in US Schools is equally concerned with possibilities for justice stemming from curricular change and affects like hope and love that are central to radical acts of resistance to oppression. Themes range from critical literacies to IQ tests, from Afro-surrealism to historiography, as the book strategically tacks between traditional forms of qualitative and quantitative research and more personal narratives. Black Lives Matter in US Schools speaks powerfully against the continued onslaught of inequities in schools and their communities, working to create space for forms of learning that are responsible to and for Black lives.

Boni Wozolek is Assistant Professor of Education at Pennsylvania State University, Abington. She is the author of Assemblages of Violence in Education: Everyday Trajectories of Oppression.


"…Black Lives Matter in US Schools offers … educators a place where the tensions they've felt are acknowledged, affirmed, and, most importantly, regarded seriously." — Journal of Curriculum Theorizing

"One of the chief questions Wozolek and her co-conspirators seek to ask is: how might we turn curriculum studies to consider the lives of the students most often at the wrong end of every educational statistic we collect? And then, how might we turn curriculum studies to the more radical project of giving those students (and their comrades) the tools they (we) need to actually create a world in which their lives not only matter but also determine the fate of everyone else on the planet?" — from the Afterword by Lester K. Spence

"This is a critically important volume that emphatically affirms BLACK LIVES MATTER! Many of the contributors are sought-after leaders in their fields and the mix of approaches coalesces into a highly readable book. The varying lines of flight on display center Black lives in ways that are scholarly rigorous, yet have the potential to reach a wide audience." — Zachary A. Casey, coauthor of Building Pedagogues: White Practicing Teachers and the Struggle for Antiracist Work in Schools