Pedagogy in process: engaging micro-decisions about race and gender

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Taylor & Francis


How might cisgender teachers of color who identify as male problematize social norms connected to race and gender? What privileges, limitations, and possibilities may emerge from such a social location? This essay explores these questions by looking at a number of micro-decisions that I make in an introductory-level undergraduate class. By utilizing a self-reflexive and inductive starting point, I ask: How do I, as a cisgender, heterosexual Mexican-American man, perform race and gender in the context of the classroom? What explicit and implicit messages may I be sending to students? And in what ways may these messages contribute to—or constrain—course themes around human liberation and freedom? Such considerations underscore the importance of attending to race and gender not only in terms of the ‘what,’ or content, of a given course, but also the ‘how’ of pedagogical delivery.