Writing Center Journal


Social justice movements, especially Black Lives Matter, inspired many writing center administrators to reflect on their commitments to antiracism and engage with antiracist professional development with their staff. However, there is continued need to study the impact antiracist professional development has on writing center consultants’ ability to practice antiracism in sessions. This article presents a predominantly white institution (PWI) writing center’s attempt to do this work, with a particular emphasis on how antiracist professional development complicates portrayals of consultant agency within the writing center. The study analyzes qualitative data collected from consultants’ reflective writing, survey, and interview responses. Results illustrate that, in the context of enacting antiracism in and beyond the writing center, consultants showed messy, partial, and incomplete forms of agency with the professional development curriculum impacting consultants of color and white consultants differently. These findings suggest writing center studies must embrace an understanding of antiracist professional development that is reflective, fragmented, and iterative, and identify more concrete practices of antiracist consulting.