Throughout the course, I have been examining the authenticity of Hillary Clinton’s discourse on race/racial issues in America.
Originally I had just naturally resolved to explore this topic based on my general interest in how America/Americans discuss race, racism, and race relations – past to present. For the first assignment, I analyzed and critiqued Clinton’s rhetoric during her first presidential debate of the 2016 season; you can find this here. In it, I found some problematic rhetoric that seemed to be more conservative and non-inclusive. This peaked my interest and from then on I wanted to start tracking Clinton’s racialized rhetoric on a whole.
I then began to look back at past speeches, her 1995“Women’s Rights are Human Rights” speech and controversial 1996 Keene State University speech in particular. In both, I found that much of the rhetoric matched her rhetoric of today – the emphasize on rights, access, and upward mobility for the middle class and women.r
Clinton seemed to not only miss the mark when it came to addressing racial issues throughout her career but at times seemed to intentionally craft a devoted audience of moderately conservative, middle class democrats.
Sometimes, Clinton’s own rhetoric served to be just as divisive as the most conservative of discussions on race, helping to further contribute to the perpetuation of racial stereotypes (Black criminalization), the lack or racial representation (education and jobs) and continued divisiveness amongst racial groups in America.
I decided that the best way to continue to examine and push the conversation forward would be to lesson plan! As a teacher, who thoroughly enjoys bringing in numerous discussion on race to the classroom, I would love to teach a unit on Hillary Clinton’s racialized rhetoric, allowing students to broach a question I would like to further explore myself/the unit’s essential question:
In what ways did Hillary Clinton’s racialization rhetoric and rhetoric on race contribute to her disconnect/loss in the 2016 election?”
For this unit, I created a syllabus, unit, and lesson plan for my ELA 12 class, titled Reading Race.
In this unit, the students will be asked to examine the following question through inquiry, summary, synthesis, analysis, and activism.
The rest of my plans include a: final unit project that utilizes digital annotations and blogging and sample lesson plan that allows students to engage in synthesis blog posts from the class, all geared to encourage students to become more engaged and active in social and political issues that affect goals to inclusion and racial equity.