Urban Education and Black Racial Identity in South Africa

Bekisizwe S. Ndimande, Helen A. Neville

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Data suggest that having a positive, internalized racial identity is related to healthy outcomes. Although some scholars have highlighted the role of education in providing a context to develop such an identity, there is a dearth of research in this area. This study analyzed racial life narrative interviews with 15 Black South Africans to explore the role of education in shaping individuals’ perceptions of being Black during and after apartheid. We uncovered three interrelated dimensions: Educational System Shapes Opportunities, Educational Context Influences Racial Awareness (through opportunities for student activism, curriculum, and personal experiences with discrimination), and Education as (Racial) Empowerment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)929-956
Number of pages28
JournalUrban Education
Issue number7
StatePublished - Sep 1 2018


  • South Africa
  • black education
  • desegregation
  • diversity
  • race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Urban Studies


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