Li, J. (2021). “I feel invisible sometimes”: The manifestations and effects of racism in social media narratives from all-girls’ schools in urban areas of central Canada. The Young Researcher, 5(1), 284-303.
2020 saw a rise of social media accounts dedicated to sharing BIPOC students’ experiences with racism at prestigious secondary or post-secondary institutions. Through a narrative analysis of one such account, this study attempts to identify the manifestations of racism in all-girls’ independent schools in urban areas of central Canada. It was found that racism expressed by fellow students tends to be exclusionary, and deprives BIPOC of community and social acceptance; racism expressed by staff and faculty is often dismissive in nature, and damages BIPOC’s faith in their teachers’ ability to provide them with academic and emotional support; and institutional racism limits BIPOC students’ ability to communicate their needs at an administrative level, and denies them the safe and inclusive learning environment they expect their institutions to provide. All three forms of racism stem from the silencing and neglect of BIPOC student voice, which suggests that the prioritization of BIPOC student voice might help address and mitigate racism in these institutions.
Keywords: racism, counternarratives, education, social media, independent school, private girls’school