#FreeGrace and the Racialized Surveillance State of COVID-19 Learning


  • Elizabeth Hornsby Southeastern Louisiana University, USA




racial capitalism, surveillance capitalism, remote learning, COVID-19


On July 14th, 2020, ProPublica published “A Teenager Didn’t Do Her Online Schoolwork. So a Judge Sent Her to Juvenile Detention”, a story about “Grace”, a fifteen-year-old who was sent to a detention center for remote learning infractions. While the larger story involves injustices of the legal system often experienced by minoritized students, there is also a smaller indictment. The surveillance technologies embedded in educational technology tools that allowed learning to continue during the onslaught of COVID-19 can have disproportionately negative effects for minoritized students. Using Grace’s story, I examine the connection between surveillance and racial capitalism in relation to remote learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, implications of the converged state of pandemic learning and possible solutions are discussed.


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Elizabeth Hornsby, Southeastern Louisiana University, USA

ELIZABETH HORNSBY, PhD, is an Assistant Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the Department of Communication and Media Studies at Southeastern Louisiana University. Her major research interests lie at the intersection of communication, culture, media and technology with a critical twist. Email: ehornsby@selu.edu