Increasing the Depth of Field: Critical Race Theory and Photovoice as Counter Storytelling Praxis

Kristen P. Goessling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Thru the Lenz was a youth participatory action project in which a group of urban high school students explored their lives and communities through art, photography, and narrative. Drawing on data from Thru the Lenz, I deploy CRT to reimagine the research space as a place for counter storytelling. Majoritarian stories are stories that invoke and perpetuate white privilege, are based on racist ideology, are pervasive and are told by whites as well as people of color (Solórzano and Yosso in Qual Inq 8:23–44, 2002a). Counter stories are a method and a tool that enable a deeper understanding of the stories the youth co-constructed though their photos and narratives and also challenge the majoritarian stories told about them, their school, and community (Solórzano and Yosso in Qual Inq 8:23–44, 2002a). Specifically, I present the research praxis organized in the form of an emerging counter story based on two key themes: good community and successful school. When constructed using a CRT framework, the students’ stories about their educational experiences provide a strong critique of neoliberal education reform. I conclude with a discussion of the tensions and challenges of engaging in counter story as critical, emancipatory praxis that elucidates the linkages of personal experiences and macro policies (Stovall in Race Ethn Educ 9:243–259, 2006).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)648-674
Number of pages27
JournalUrban Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Urban Studies


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