Updated: Nov 22, 2021
“The Most Insidious Legacy”—Teaching About Redlining and the Impact of Racial Residential Segregation
Redlining is one of the most important issues to illustrate the depth of systemic racism in America. Thus it is particularly important to center conversations about redlining when teaching about cities, urban development and real estate. Redlining was/is the practice used by racist politicians, urban planners, financial service groups and health care providers to systematically segregate ethnic and racial communities within cities and deny poorer communities financial, health care and consumer services as well as infrastructure investment. The mapping system used was a way to maximize profits by fixing the housing market while simultaneously committing institutionalized segregation even after the fall of Jim Crow laws. The effects of redlining continue today, and even if the methodological practice was not used everywhere, a combination of racist ideologies and "white flight" from neighborhoods cemented the ideology across all of America. This lesson plan provides a pedagogical approach/map to teaching about redlining in the classroom. Access the lesson plan here.