White complicityand social justice education: can one be culpable without being liable?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations


In part of an ongoing study of white complicity, moral responsibility, and moral agency in social justice education, Barbara Applebaum asks in this essay what model or models of moral responsibility can help white students recognize their white complicity and which models of moral responsibility obscure such acknowledgment. To address this question, she explores the concept of white complicity and its relation to racism and raises some compelling conceptual and pedagogical questions. Then she reviews a recent analysis of the concept of "complicity" and shows it to be inadequate as a foundation for white complicity. Finally, Applebaum describes Iris Marion Young's conception of a Social Connection Model of Responsibility and shows it to be capable not only of elucidating white complicity but also, when incorporated in social justice pedagogy, of diminishing denials of white complicity by white students.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)453-467
Number of pages15
JournalEducational Theory
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2007


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education

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