Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality: Race, Culture, and Identity in the ESL Classroom


  • Shaden Attia Western University


This paper discusses the use of Critical Race Theory (CRT), intersectionality, and different teaching approaches in K-12 ESL classrooms to introduce race-related concepts, culture, and identity. It highlights the importance of such theories and concepts in achieving inclusivity and creating a welcoming learning environment, underlining the need for research on developing in-class activities that focus on culture, identity, and race. The paper begins with an overview of CRT and intersectionality, emphasizing their pertinence in TESOL and ESL pedagogy. Then, different teaching methods such as Culturally Responsive Teaching and Social Justice Education are discussed highlighting their benefits and how they can be used to introduce race, culture, and power relations to English Language Learners (ELLs). The paper concludes with a discussion of the role of literature, counter-stories, and critical literacy in teaching ELLs about race, culture, and identity, accompanied by practical in-class activity suggestions. This paper not only introduces educators to CRT and intersectionality but also provides a range of practical activities and insights for effectively incorporating race-related topics in ESL education.






Position Paper/Essai