Envisioning Black space in environmental education for young children

Fikile Nxumalo, kihana miraya ross*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


In this article, we bring attention to absences and deficit assumptions that continue to circulate in relation to environmental education for young Black children in North America. We focus our attention on tracing some of the ways in which racial innocence works to exclude and limit possibilities for young Black children’s learning. Our analysis includes making visible connections between racialized discourses of childhood innocence, antiblackness in schooling, ongoing settler colonialism, and dominant forms of environmental education for young children. In seeking otherwise possibilities for Black childhoods in environmental education contexts, we turn to Black speculative fiction as a creative and generative mode of imagining fugitive educational spaces for young Black children.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)502-524
Number of pages23
JournalRace Ethnicity and Education
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 4 2019


  • Antiblackness
  • early childhood education
  • environmental education
  • speculative fiction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Cultural Studies
  • Education


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