What is Critical Race Theory

Definition: Critical Race Theory (CRT) resulted from an intellectual movement and loosely organized framework of legal analysis based on the premise that race is not a natural, biologically grounded feature of physically distinct subgroups of human beings but a socially constructed (culturally invented) category that is used to oppress and exploit people of color. Critical race theorists hold that the law and legal institutions in the United States are inherently racist insofar as they function to create and maintain social, economic, and political inequalities between whites and nonwhites, especially African Americans.11 Source: Encyclopedia Britannica

Critical Race Theory developed in the 1970s as an effort by activists and legal scholars to understand why the U.S. civil rights movement had lost momentum and was in danger of being reversed. Their approach emphasized general and systemic features of the legal system that served to perpetuate race-based oppression and white privilege. 22 Source: Encyclopedia Britannica This was an offshoot of Marxist-oriented critical theory.33 Source: Encyclopedia Britannica

After CRT became known, there has been push-back by concerned parents that prompted CRT advocates to start using a new name “Social Emotional Learning (SEL)”


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