The policing of women of colour in the academy

For women of colour I developed Ivory Tower

As a political mission to give voice and empower

Sisters like me who struggle for equality

And to be respected within the academy,

It seems that no matter how hard we toil in our universities

We’re subjected to unjust levels of scrutiny

Which amounts to a form of interrogation, policing, and yes, intimidation

This is not acceptable I have to say, we’re not criminals, you see

We’re academics whose contributions to the knowledge economy

Should be valued within the academy

So collectively we unite, my sisters and me

To challenge this inequality and reclaim our humanity

A necessary act of resistance, since because of our gender and our race

Whiteness and privilege marks our space

By Deborah Gabriel

Permission granted to share and reprint this poem with credit to the author and with link to the original URL

The policing of women of colour in the academy

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Dr Deborah Gabriel

Deborah Gabriel has spent the last decade as an award-winning academic, achieving recognition both for her educational practice and research. She is currently based at Bournemouth university, where she lectures across degrees in politics, advertising, public relations and marketing communications. Deborah specialises in social justice pedagogy and critical race pedagogy and her teaching is taught from a critical race/gender standpoint. She is the Founder and Director of Black British Academics and undertakes consultancy supporting institutions in enhancing race equality across academic, operational and educational practice.

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