Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Rosalind Chou

Second Advisor

Tomeka Davis

Third Advisor

Wendy Simonds


Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have been noted for their ability to create an environment that fosters black intellectuality, specifically for students who are systematically excluded from white academic spaces. At a time with heightened racism on college campuses, it is important to examine the purpose and significance of HBCUs in today’s perceived post racial society. Utilizing an extended case method, I explore how students at HBCUs discuss their experiences on campus and the extent to which HBCU students conceptualize race and racial events using the white racial frame and black anti-racists counter frames. Semi-structured interviews reveal a coexistence of elements of the dominant white racial frame and counter-frames, suggesting a dialectic relationship within predominantly black academic spaces. Therefore, it is important for HBCUs to assess the ways in which white supremacy is a manifested within these spaces.