Borderland Practice: Citizenship, Race, Gender, and Critical Praxis

Borderland Practice: Citizenship, Race, Gender, and Critical Praxis
CRG Research Working Group, 2013-2014

This working group aims to a) examine the intersections of race, class, gender, and citizenship within health, social service, and practice settings and b) foster opportunities for meaningful collaboration and participatory research with grassroots groups and community-based organizations engaged in supporting immigrant and migrant communities.

While professional schools such as the School of Public Health and Social Welfare offer specific courses on related topics, such as racial health disparities, community-based participatory research, and social work practice for specific “diverse” communities (e.g. Latino populations, immigrants and refugees), there is a need for additional spaces to support students and practitioners, particularly of color, in negotiating the pervading structural racism, sexism, and xenophobia that are deeply embedded within many institutional settings that provide critical health and social services for immigrants and migrant communities. 

Specifically, this proposed working group will explore the following questions:

1. How are discourses surrounding immigration and health informed by ideologies of race, class, gender and citizenship? How do these intersections shape the values, assumptions, and frames that shape practice and policy in these fields?
2. How do practitioners, particularly of color, ethically negotiate insider-outsider positionality in order to bridge (dialogue or transform?) research in these fields with critical practice methodologies?
3. What community-driven strategies are needed to transform health and social service systems, practices, and programs to better serve the needs of immigrant communities while acknowledging questions of privilege, power and positionality?