Two Sides of a Coin: Safe Space and Segregation in Race/Ethnic-Specific Law Student Organizations
Meera E. Deo
Thomas Jefferson School of Law
July 14, 2012
Washington University Journal of Law and Policy, Vol. 42, p. 83, 2013
Thomas Jefferson School of Law Research Paper No. 2097926
American racism and discrimination continue to plague our institutions of higher education. Predominantly white law school environments are especially notable for being inhospitable and unfriendly. Many law students of color create and join race/ethnic-specific organizations in order to receive support on otherwise unwelcoming campuses. While many students view these groups as a safe space that provides a buffer from the rest of law school life, others worry that these organizations may increase segregation. When considered through a lens of structural inequality and privilege, we see that “exclusion” may have different meanings and outcomes based on the relative racial hierarchy of the groups involved. My research uses both quantitative and qualitative data to better understand how what some consider “self-segregation” may be necessary for creating safe space.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 48
Keywords: higher education, sociology of education, diversity, student support, segregation
JEL Classification: K19, K39Accepted Paper Series
Date posted: July 14, 2012 ; Last revised: November 20, 2013
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