* Apologies for cross posting *
Call for expressions of interest
13th International Critical Management Studies Conference, Nottingham, June 20-22, 2023
WORKSHOP: Decolonizing education by raising our consciousness of (and paving the way for action against) racial student-to-student bullying
Payal Kumar (ISH, India)
Dharm P S Bhawuk (University of Hawai'i, Manoa, USA),
Stella M. Nkomo (University of Pretoria, South Africa),
Ameeta Motwani (Jesus and Mary College, University of Delhi)
Register your participation by 15th April, 2023 (in person, or over zoom)
Registration link: https://forms.gle/1kGKkMAcubZYqRum8
Bullying at the school or college level can have much more serious repercussions for students than we may be aware of. Neuroscience research is suggesting more than ever that traumatic childhood is associated with the theory of vulnerability (McCrory & Viding, 2015) - in other words bullying at a young age leads to a greater likelihood of psychiatric disorder spanning across a lifetime. A fairly understudied area that needs to be investigated further is the intersectionality of school bullying and racial discrimination is, moreso as Carter's theory of race-based traumatic stress (2007) suggests that this leads to a unique type of trauma that generates symptoms similar to post-traumatic stress disorder.
In the context of racial school bullying, Payal Kumar speaks of the heart-wrenching story of her younger sister (Leena), for whom racial school bullying at the age of 14 at a school in Manchester, England wreaked havoc over a life-time. Her victimization represents the intersectionality of race, gender and intelligence. Leena's case is not an isolated one: in general more Asians than Caucasian students report racial bullying (Scherr & Larson, 2009).
As teachers we need to be aware that even if students do not face physical violence as in this case, bullying can lead to considerable trauma. Says Prof Dhar Bhawuk, Professor of Management and Culture and Community Psychology, University of Hawaii, USA, "The Black Lives Matter movement should not be understood as only a protest against killing people. Lives are also destroyed without killing people by racism, sexism, and any form of discrimination when a person is not allowed to flourish and achieve his or her potential. What happened to your sister is not only a loss for her, for your family, but a loss for humanity too."
In the face of life stressors the rate of traumatic stress is seen to be higher in people of colour. Says Stella Nkomo, Strategic professor, University of Pretoria, South Africa, "The narrative of your sister is most tragic. I believe the label micro-aggression is inappropriate - it is racism, and racism hurts psychologically and physically. Racism is a crime against humanity. I would challenge up front some of the assumptions about microaggressions, excusing them as unconscious bias, especially as often the perpetrator does not suffer any consequences while the victim can, as in the case of your sister, be severely harmed." As educators as we spend months teaching our students, and so we are ideally positioned to pick up cues of conflict-laden, inter-personal dynamics between students, and it is hoped that this PDW will lead to discussions on what we can do to prevent such tragedies.
Key take-aways for participants
An opportunity to critique our existing processes in management education and raise our consciousness as teachers. An opportunity to identify pertinent knowledge gaps and research possibilities on stereotypes and discrimination at various types of intersectionality. (Hybrid format – 90 minutes)
Carter, R. T. (2007). Racism and psychological and emotional injury: Recognizing and assessing race-based traumatic stress. The Counseling Psychologist, 35(1), 13-105.
McCrory, E. J., & Viding, E. (2015). The theory of latent vulnerability: Reconceptualizing the link between childhood maltreatment and psychiatric disorder. Development and psychopathology, 27(2), 493–505.
Scherr, T. G., & Larson, J. (2009). Bullying dynamics associated with race, ethnicity, and immigration status. In Handbook of bullying in schools (pp. 233-244). Routledge.