Black Educational Activism for Community Empowerment: International Leadership Perspectives


  • Camille Wilson University of Michigan
  • Lauri Johnson Boston College



Black activism, border crossing, boundary spanning, institutional activism, social capital


This article discusses themes emerging from studies of Black educational activism conducted in London, Toronto, and Detroit. A critical meta-analysis reveals that Black educational activists resist racism and other forms of oppression; act as border crossers and/or boundary spanners as they navigate complex community-based, institutional, and political terrains; serve as change agents from the grassroots to institutional level; and, develop and enact distinct types of social capital to yield community versus individual uplift. The authors conclude that activists should be valued as leaders and strategically engaged in K-12 public school systems to combat racism and build effective school-community alliances.

Author Biographies

Camille Wilson, University of Michigan

Department of Educational Studies

Associate Professor



Lauri Johnson, Boston College

Associate Professor

Department of Educational Leadership and Higher Education




How to Cite

Wilson, C., & Johnson, L. (2015). Black Educational Activism for Community Empowerment: International Leadership Perspectives. International Journal of Multicultural Education, 17(1), 102–120.