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Attainment and identity in the face of dual oppression: Exploring the educational experiences of British females of Caribbean heritage.

Cummings, Sabrina (2018) Attainment and identity in the face of dual oppression: Exploring the educational experiences of British females of Caribbean heritage. DEdCPsy thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Sabrina Cummings Final Thesis.docx
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Appendix VIII Focus Group Transcription.docx
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Abstract

The persistent underachievement of Black children of Caribbean descent and their over-representation in Special Educational Needs (SEN) has been highly documented within the UK. However, whilst there is wealth of research exploring the educational experiences of Black males, little has been written about the experiences of Black females of Caribbean heritage. This study explores the relationship between identity and the educational experiences of Black females of Caribbean heritage in the UK, considered to be academically successful. It considers potential protective factors and barriers to educational achievement for participants, how their experiences and identities are expressed within group interviews and the impact of intersectionality on educational experience. Constructs of power, oppression and belonging are explored through psychological frameworks of identity formation, psychoanalytic colonial theory, Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Critical Race Feminism (FemCrit). The participants engaged in two focus group interviews to explore the research questions around their identity and experienced facilitators and barriers to educational success. The second focus group was aimed at expanding upon themes and encouraging participants to reflect on and contribute to the analysis of the first focus group. Narrative analysis, incorporating The Listening Guide (Woodcock, 2016) is utilised to attend to and respect the voices and experiences of participants. The study illuminated the complexities of identity as participants highlighted the primacy of Blackness as an identifier and the significance of both their Caribbean heritage and British identity. Gender was considered to be an important but perhaps less salient feature of identity. In relation to barriers to success, participants highlighted experiencing social and emotional difficulties in majority White settings and/or in the absence of Black peers, on account of their being the racial anomaly. Additionally, relationships with teachers were presented as depending on participants’ ability to perform as the ideal student which could conflict with cultural /individual identities. Personal ambition and resilience in addition to recognition of family and ancestral ambition, support and sacrifices, were highlighted as facilitators of success. Learning behaviours which supported achievement were also discussed, with some participants professing to practicing silence and enacting personal agency in their approach to knowledge development and others speaking out and seeking support from the community around them.

Item Type: Thesis (DEdCPsy)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > School of Education (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.752617
Depositing User: Mrs Sabrina Cummings
Date Deposited: 31 Aug 2018 14:15
Last Modified: 12 Oct 2018 09:56
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/21340

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