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Competition, Community, and Educational Growth

Contemporary Perspectives on Competitive Speech and Debate

Edited By Kristopher Copeland and Garret L. Castleberry

Competition, Community, and Educational Growth: Contemporary Perspectives on Competitive Speech and Debate is an up-to-date text providing informed academic thought concerning the impact of forensics. Its primary focus is to demonstrate how the forensic activity allows students to actively engage and learn outside the classroom. Specifically, Competition, Community, and Educational Growth focuses on how students educationally grow through the activity. The book frames methods and pedagogy as best practices to provide educational growth for students and explicitly connect learning outcomes for students. Coming from the perspective of higher educational instructors, the book provides insight beyond the high school experience. Competition, Community, and Educational Growth examines contemporary perspectives on competitive speech and debate theory, experience, and methods of instruction.

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Chapter 4: Interrogating Traditionally White Curriculum and White Savior Coaches in Debate (Luis M. Andrade / Jon Bruschke)


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Interrogating Traditionally White Curriculum and White Savior Coaches in Debate



The system of higher education “is plagued by deep and persistent inequities by race and ethnicity.”1 The transition into a 4-year university is psychologically troubling for students of color, particularly first-generation attendees, and often for cultural reasons. These patterns exist in the community of Latinx students.2 Since 2004, high school completion for Latinx students has increased from 57 to 65 percent, and college enrollment from 54 to 70 percent.3 Yet Latinx students lag behind their white peers in college degree completion.4 Researchers have explored faculty-student interactions as one means of improving student success. Support from what researchers deem “institutional agents” (IAs), such as counselors, educators, faculty, and staff, is closely related to student persistence, success, and belongingness.5

In this chapter we provide an autoethnographic account of our complex and productive relationship between a white coach and Latinx student in the context of intercollegiate policy debate. Autoethnography allows researchers to study underrepresented spaces, investigate personal, subjective and emotional experiences, and explore the intersections of culture and social relationships.6 In particular, we explore the role of debate coaches as institutional agents. We address how whiteness might be decentered through liberatory curricula and the interrogation of a white savior ideology. (Paragraphs that are primarily the voice of a single author begin with that author’s name identified in italics; other paragraphs...

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