UM Humanities Institute Statement: In Solidarity and Against Racism

black lives matter

George Floyd. Jamar Clark. Breona Taylor. Ahmaud Arbery. Botham Jean. Ezell Ford. Michael Brown.

The history of police brutality against African Americans in the U.S. is a lengthy one. We were reminded of that grim and devastating history with the recent and shocking death of George Floyd. The Humanities Institute stands with the African American community in mourning his death and that of others, acknowledging the damaging legacy of racial discrimination and the ongoing realities of police brutality, systemic violence, educational and economic inequality, bigotry, ignorance, indifference, commodification, and degradation of African American life and culture.

The Humanities Institute's goal of supporting scholarship includes that of African American scholars who tackle challenging issues such as white supremacy and racial discrimination while highlighting the importance of anti-racism and social and political activism. We are committed to creating space for dialogue about these and related issues.

During this devastating moment, we look to scholars in and beyond the humanities to guide us in understanding the realities of a painful past shaped by racism, discrimination, and hatred, confronting a present still marked by pervasive institutional and individual racism, and, inspired by Black Lives Matter and the Civil Rights Movement, working toward a brighter future based on equality, justice, diversity, and tolerance