Critical Race Theory

From its origins in US legal studies, CRT has grown to become one of the most important perspectives on racism in education internationally. Frequently attacked by detractors who over-simplify and caricature the approach, CRT offers an insightful and nuanced approach to understanding the processes that shape and sustain race inequality in society.

CRRE members are among the leading CRT educationists internationally and the approach informs much of the centre’s work.

CRT in Education: a primer

For a brief introduction to CRT in education, read a primer prepared for the British Educational Research Association (BERA) by Nicola Rollock and David Gillborn

Download the Critical Race Theory Primer (PDF, 93.29KB) 

CRT in the UK

An Unwelcome Guest?

David Gillborn and Paul Warmington analyse the first ten years of CRT in the UK.


Speaking in a keynote session at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (AERA), Gillborn & Warmington describe the growth of CRT in the UK, reflect on the distinctive qualities of ‘BritCrit’, and analyse the nature of the attacks that have been levelled against the approach. 

Watch the presentation at:

Paul Warmington (CRRE deputy director) was part of the team that organized the first international conference on CRT and education ever held in the UK. Papers presented at the conference, and reflections on the growth of CRT, can be found in the collection that he co-edited:

Kevin Hylton, Andrew Pilkington, Paul Warmington & Shirin Housee (eds)(2011) Atlantic Crossings: International Dialogues on Critical Race Theory. Birmingham: Sociology, Anthropology, Politics (CSAP), The Higher Education Academy Network, University of Birmingham.

More Details on the Atlantic Crossings: International Dialogues on Critical Race Theory book

A special issue of the journal ‘Race Ethnicity and Education’ recently brought together new writing on CRT in education from UK authors.

Find out more about the 'Critical Theory in England' special issue  

The best CRT in legal and educational studies

There are many excellent collections that include outstanding pieces of CRT scholarship. This collection, co-edited by David Gillborn (CRRE Director), is the first book to bring together the most important examples from the worlds of Law and Education. The first edition has been adopted as a core text by many courses internationally; the second edition builds on this success and includes new sections on racism in the everyday world of education and intersections between race and dis/ability.

Foundations of Critical Race Theory in Education (Second Edition)Edward Taylor, David Gillborn & Gloria Ladson-Billings (eds)(2016) Foundations of Critical Race Theory in Education. Second Edition. New York: Routledge.

View the abstract and contents page for Foundations of Critical Race Theory in Education