Considerations for Using Critical Race Theory and Critical Content Analysis: A Research Note

  • Lindsay Pérez Huber California State University, Long Beach
  • Lorena Camargo Gonzalez University of California, Los Angeles
  • Daniel G. Solórzano University of Califonia, Los Angeles
Keywords: Critical race theory, Race and racism, Latina/o education, Latinx education, Cataloguing


This conceptual paper explores how Critical Race Theory (CRT) in education can be utilized with a Critical Content Analysis (CCA) of children's literature. We first explain how we came to this work as education scholars trained to examine systemic racism in educational institutions. We then explain the steps we have taken to pursue our current study that examines the portrayal of Latinx in children's literature. First, we describe an online library catalog platform that we have created to catalog a book collection of over 300 books by/about Latinx people published in the United States during a five-year period from 2011 to 2015. Next, we outline our understanding of two prevalent research approaches in critical analyses of children and youth literature, Critical Multicultural Analysis (CMA) and CCA. We then explain CRT in education and its tenets. Finally, we explain how the tenets of CRT can be applied to a CCA. We provide a set of guidelines for researchers to use in their own critical race analyses of children’s literature and use an example of how these guidelines are applied.

Author Biographies

Lindsay Pérez Huber, California State University, Long Beach

Dr. Lindsay Pérez Huber is an associate professor in the College of Education at California State University—Long Beach. She is also a visiting scholar at the UCLA Center for Critical Race Studies. Her research analyzes racial inequities in education, their impact on Students of Color, and how students and their communities respond to those inequities through strategies of resistance for social change. 

Lorena Camargo Gonzalez, University of California, Los Angeles

Lorena Camargo Gonzalez is a doctoral student at the University of California—Los Angeles in the Social Sciences and Comparative Education program, with a specialization in Race and Ethnic Studies.  Her research interests include race, racism and microaggressions in education, Latinx student access to higher education, and representations of Latinx in young adult literature and children’s books. 

Daniel G. Solórzano, University of Califonia, Los Angeles

Dr. Daniel G. Solórzano is a professor at the UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. He is also director of the UCLA Center for Critical Race Studies. His teaching and research interests include critical race and gender studies of underrepresented minority undergraduate and graduate students in the United States.