Author (Your Name)

Emma Terwilliger

Date of Award


Document Type

Honors Thesis (Open Access)


Colby College. Anthropology Dept.


Britt Halvorson

Second Advisor

Chandra Bhimull


This research considers white supremacist formations at an elite, place-based educational institution in the Bahamas. Place-based education is an educational philosophy that connects “learning” to the setting in which students are engaging in that learning. Through the structuring philosophy of place-based education, I examine how white supremacist formations are/were engaged with, experienced, remembered, and reinforced by 11 former and current educators, administrators and students who have attended/worked at the school. I contend with my interlocutors’ memories and experiences through four interwoven threads: tourism and imperialism in the Bahamas as manifested through the school’s “place-based” educational philosophy, militarist ordering of every-day experience, institutional renderings of diversity, and curricular frames of place. A structuring concept of this research is “assemblage;” building on a variety of scholars’ work, I consider assemblage as a way to locate how white supremacist formations at the school become, remain, and are reinforced and obscured. Assemblage allows for a critique of the project of place-based education as it illuminates how experiences are never just and only experiences, but rather complex locations shaped through systemic forces such as imperialism.


place, white supremacy, whiteness, remembering, experience, elite schooling