Being Critical of Critical Race Theory

May 10, 2021 by

Critical Race Theory (CRT) is sweeping through many organizations, schools, and even religious organizations today. However, CRT—its origins, its fruits, and its effects—is contrary to love. As Catholics, we must be critical of Critical Race Theory, as it is contrary to Catholicism and common sense.

Britannica tells us the origins of Critical Race Theory:

Critical race theory (CRT) was officially organized in 1989, at the first annual Workshop on Critical Race Theory, though its intellectual origins go back much farther, to the 1960s and ’70s. Its immediate precursor was the critical legal studies (CLS) movement, [which is] an offshoot of Marxist-oriented critical theory.

CRT, then, is based on the Marxist-centered Critical Theory, which has at its core the doctrine of deconstruction. Richard Delgado, one of the founders of CRT, defines deconstruction as the “Intellectual approach that targets traditional interpretation of terms, concepts, and practices, showing that they contain unsuspecting meanings or internal contradictions” (Delgado and Stefancic, Critical Race Theory: An Introduction, 3rd Ed., p. 171).

Deconstruction is not only one of the core elements of CRT, but it is also one of the core elements of Critical Theory, explained by Britannica as a “Marxist-inspired movement in social and political philosophy originally associated with the work of the Frankfurt School. Drawing particularly on the thought of Karl Marx and Sigmund Freud, critical theorists maintain that a primary goal of philosophy is to understand and to help overcome the social structures through which people are dominated and oppressed.”

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