Harrison, L., & Clark, L. (2016). Contemporary issues of social justice: A focus on race and physical education in the united states. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, , 1-12.
Ongoing events in the United States show the continual need to address issues of social justice in every social context. Of particular note in this article, the contemporary national focus on race has thrust social justice issues into the forefront of the country’s conscious. Although legal segregation has ran its course, schools and many neighborhoods remain, to a large degree, culturally, ethnically, linguistically, economically, and racially segregated and unequal (Orfield & Lee, 2005). Even though an African American president presently occupies the White House the idea of a postracial America remains an unrealized ideal. Though social justice and racial discussions are firmly entrenched in educational research, investigations that focus on race are scant in physical education literature. Here, we attempt to develop an understanding of social justice in physical education with a focus on racial concerns. We purposely confine the examination to the U.S. context to avoid the dilution of the importance of these issues, while recognizing other international landscapes may differ significantly. To accomplish this goal, we hope to explicate the undergirding theoretical tenants of critical race theory and culturally relevant pedagogy in relation to social justice in physical education. Finally, we make observations of social justice in the physical education and physical education teacher education realms to address and illuminate areas of concern.
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