Sherelle Ducksworth: Sociological Theory and Precursors to Approaching Critical Race Theory

Part 1 of Sherelle Ducksworth’s contribution to our Critical Race Theory series.

Over the last year I have read and listened to many views and opinions on CRT. In an effort to not be redundant since the previous contributors to this series provided a lot of information and thoughtful commentary on CRT, I hope to contribute to the conversation as not only a Christian but as a sociologist by profession. My contribution will consist of two parts. Part I is a discussion on four precursors on sociological theory one should know before approaching CRT. Since CRT is arguably a sociological theory, understanding sociological theory might be helpful in how we engage it. Part II is a discussion on four precursors on critical theory one should know before approaching CRT and a final admonishment for Christians.

I was a sophomore at a community college when I first heard of sociology. Sitting in class one day, my instructor grabbed my attention as she examined, analyzed, and explained the nuances of everyday social experiences that produced fascinating outcomes. What I remember most is learning about socialization and how who we were as individual persons had come from a host of influences such as our families, the media, and even our neighborhoods. I was intrigued and that intrigue began my path as a sociologist. After graduation, I enrolled in a Historically Black University and majored in sociology where I learned graduate social theory and became familiar with how sociologists like Karl Marx and Max Weber understood society. Two years later, I enrolled at Mississippi State University to pursue a Master of Science in sociology with an emphasis in social stratification and eventually graduated and became a sociology instructor. I have spent the last 14 years studying sociology, understanding the discipline, and …

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