In this chapter, Travis describes an account of a racialized experience in an elementary school art classroom. Using the concept of (dis)orientation as theorized by Sara Ahmed (Queer Phenomenology, 2006), Travis describes an experience teaching with the work of African American artist Faith Ringgold. In response to the reading by African American actress Ruby Dee of Ringgold’s children’s book, Tar Beach, a group of white students responded with (dis)orienting laughter. Travis describes the experience of this insidiously hostile laughter and considers the ways in which this embodied response functions as a microaggression that is both orienting and disorienting.
- Reading Rainbow. (1992, October 5). Tar beach [Television series episode].Google Scholar
- Ringgold, F. (1991). Tar beach. New York, NY: Crown Publishers.Google Scholar
Related Further Reading
- Brooks, J. G. (2011). Bearing the weight: Discomfort as a necessary condition for “less violent” and more equitable dialogic learning. Educational Foundations, 25(1/2), 43–62.Google Scholar
- Kraehe, A. M. (2015). Sounds of silence: Race and emergent counter-narratives of art teacher identity. Studies in Art Education, 56(3), 199–213.Google Scholar
- Mills, C. W. (2007). White ignorance. In S. Sullivan & N. Tuana (Eds.), Race and epistemologies of ignorance (pp. 11–28). Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.Google Scholar