The construction of the racialized Other in the educational sphere: The stories of students with immigrant backgrounds in Montréal
Fahimeh Darchinian
Université de Montréal
Marie-Odile Magnan
Université de Montréal
Roberta de Oliveira Soares
Université de Montréal
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turning points
educational sphere
youths with immigrant backgrounds

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Darchinian, F., Magnan, M.-O., & de Oliveira Soares, R. (2021). The construction of the racialized Other in the educational sphere: The stories of students with immigrant backgrounds in Montréal. Journal of Culture and Values in Education, 4(2), 52-64.


This paper presents the results of an empirical study of social relations from a critical race theory perspective crossed with the sociology of the life course. The objective of our study was to understand how social relations in Quebec’s educational sphere, specifically in high school, construct fixed categories of racialized students in university. With the aim of discovering the underlying process of racialization of the students of racial backgrounds in educative sphere, the study analyzes the self-reported relational experiences of 10 university students with immigrant backgrounds in Montréal. Based on a narrative inquiry, the analysis of the retrospective life story interviews allowed to explain the complexity of the process of racialization in two categories of “complete racialization” and “incomplete racialization.” In the “completed racialization” category, negotiating domination relationships results in the construction of a racialized Other. In the “incomplete racialization” category, the construction process is in progress. Our study has shown that social relations in high school contribute to the construction of fixed Black and Latinx racialized groups. Interpersonal relationships at school play a role in the racialization of students with immigrant backgrounds, and, although limited in scope, persistence in school may be a reversal strategy for their experiences of racism.

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