Charter Schools, Black Social Life, and the Refusal of Death in Post-Katrina New Orleans

Justin Hosbey, PhD
CBSR Postdoctoral Fellow

Portrait of Justin Hosbey

Dr. Hosbey is a sociocultural anthropologist, interdisciplinary ethnographer, and Black studies scholar. Broadly, his intellectual work is interested in the ways that Black Americans have resisted anti-Black violence from the beginnings of racial slavery through its afterlife -- using, in the words of Lorraine Hansberry, "every single means of struggle: legal, illegal, passive, active, violent, non-violent." More specifically, his ethnograpic work explores Black social and cultural life in the U.S. Gulf Coast and Mississippi Delta regions, focusing on the ways that southern Black communities articulate insurgent modes of citizenship that demand the interruption of racial capitalism. His current ethnographic project utilizes research methods from the digital and spatial humanities to explore and visualize how the privatization of neighborhood schools and low income and working class Black communities has fractured, but not broken, Black space and place making in post-Katrina New Orleans, Louisiana, USA.

Seeding Transformation for Seven Generations: A Case Study of Roses in Concrete Community School

Joaquin Noguera
CBSR Postdoctoral Fellow

Dr. Joaquin Noguera

Dr. Joaquin Noguera is a former social worker, K-12 teacher, school leader, and director of an international youth leadership institute dedicated to serving Black and Latinx youth through community activism and international travel. He is also a consultant and coach to schools, districts, educators and other learning organizations throughout the country. As a consultant, he works in a variety of capacities to support the development and improvement of learning systems, structures, practices and processes – through strategic planning, vision and mission development and alignment, leadership coaching, in-class engagement support, evaluation and organizational review, curriculum design, workshops and trainings, and as a thinking partner - typically with a focus on equity, social justice and healing.

For his postdoctoral research, Dr. Noguera will convert his dissertation, Seeding Transformation for Seven Generations: A Case Study of Roses in Concrete Community School, into a manuscript and a number of research articles. Noguera’s work examines education and schooling as mechanisms of social, cultural and political reproduction, and their potential to support transformation, healing and revitalization. His dissertation looks at how a school that was deliberately designed to counter the adverse conditions of a working class, urban Black and Brown community meets the social-emotional and academic needs of students while working to revitalize the broader community and support healing. In the case of Roses in Concrete Community School, the theory of change involves prioritizing critical hope, love, Black and Brown solidarity, and wrap around services. In addition, learning and teaching are structured by Ethnic Studies, English-Spanish dual immersion, and arts-based, social justice-oriented engagement. Looking at three levels of the school – learning and teaching; leadership, management and accountability; and partnerships with families and the community – the dissertation considers strategies, practices interventions and supports, as well as challenges faced by the school and its stakeholders. The project makes theoretical and empiricalcontributions to extant literature on critical education for healing and transformation in urban communities of color, critical theories of race, identity and social change, and both structural violence and healing at various levels of scale across place and time in a white settler colonial society.