Tag Archives: social justice

Rage, Hope & Forgiveness Lecture

rage_hope_forgiveness_poster_revThis Tuesday, come to a timely talk hosted by the philosophy department. The Second Annual Social Justice Lecture will feature Myisha Cherry of Harvard University and Alice MacLachlan of York University in Toronto, as well as Wesleyan’s own Axelle Karera, discussing rage, hope, and–perhaps–forgiveness.

The talk will be followed by a reception and continued discussion in the seminar room of Russell House (350 High St).

Date: Tuesday, November 15
Time: 4:30pm
Place: PAC 001

Common Ground: Exploring the Intersections of Environmentalism and Social Justice

common groundOlivia Won ’18 writes in:

‘Common Ground’ is a collaborative art exhibition that explores the intersections between environmental and social justice issues. This project aims to foster growth between different communities on campus and to create a space for more inclusive dialogue and collaboration. This installation features art produced by members of the Wesleyan community that speaks to a variety of environmental justice issues facing our world. Through artistic media, we hope to help repair the schism that has developed on campus between the different approaches to the environmental movement and between environmental and social justice activists.

Let’s find common ground together.

Come join us for an evening of collaboration, dance, music, spoken word, and art!

Schedule of performances/art making/workshops TBA!

FB event

Date: Wednesday, April 27
Time: 4-8 PM
Place: The Workshop

Environmental Justice Art Exhibit

Plant puppetKatie Lowen ’19 writes in:

Hi! We are currently working on a project about the intersections of environmentalism and social justice. We want to look at how art can materialize the entanglement of humans and nature and the implications of that relationship as it is lived in our world.

Our goal is to create a collective art installation and gallery show to bring the Wesleyan community together. We are interested in how art can be used as a unifying force and to facilitate interactions between social justice/environmental activism, art focused on bridging gaps.

Art submissions should address the relationship between Environmental Issues and Social Justice; they can be in the form of drawings, paintings, music, spoken word, written pieces, expressive movement, anything that you feel expresses your ideas! For performance pieces or other types of artistic expression that cannot be sent through email, please submit a proposal. We hope that we can create a space for collaboration and coalition-building with different groups across campus as we build this collection together.

Please send submissions (either art or proposal for performance) to dtpope[at]wesleyan[dot]eduowon[at]wesleyan[dot]edu, or klowen[at]wesleyan[dot]edu. The deadline is April 8th! Our tentative dates for this gallery are 4/14 or 4/21 and location is TBA.

Submission Deadline: Friday, April 8

Social Justice Teach-In

Social Justice Teach-In FlyerFGSS has organized a teach-in happening tomorrow!

Panels include:

  • Race, Gender and Intersectionality in Social Movements
  • Words that Harm
  • The Complexities of Allyship

There will be refreshments!

Date: Friday, February 12
Time: 12-5–come and go as you can!
Place: Russell House

Philosophy Department Open House & New Social Justice Track

Screen Shot 2015-11-05 at 8.11.45 AM

From Colleen Pedlow ’17:

Are you passionate about social justice issues? Are you interested in exploring how individuals and social institutions can promote justice? If so, come to Russell House at noon this Thursday to learn more about the Philosophy department’s exciting new social justice track! Thai food will be provided.

The social justice track seeks to recognize the importance of philosophy in addressing questions of human rights, equality, and social responsibility. Philosophical analyses paired with careful argumentation provide important tools for grappling with real world injustices. Students who choose the social justice track will have the opportunity to build their own social justice concentration within the philosophy major composed of 5 courses centered on a topic of their choice.

All students who are interested in, or curious about, pursuing a major/minor in philosophy are welcome to the department’s open house this Thursday. Come to ask questions, meet students and faculty and enjoy a delicious meal!

Date: Thursday, November 5
Time: 12:00 – 1:00 PM
Place: Russel House

More Speech, Please: Activism, Censorship, and Whose Voices Get Heard

photo by Jonas Powell '18

photo by Jonas Powell ’18

Every few months, it seems, another one of those articles surfaces about how political correctness or trigger warnings or “social justice” is ruining the country or the educational system or everything. Our own President Roth reminded us a few weeks ago that “there is no right not to be offended.” These arguments typically suggest that because a few of us are so fragile and oversensitive, everyone is losing: words are banned, jokes are less funny, debates about important issues are diluted or even curtailed.

While I’m really not concerned if racist jokes lose their appeal, I agree that we need more, not less, conversation. Ignoring problems doesn’t make them go away, and indeed, often worsens them. If we can’t talk about the systems of oppression that plague our society–racism, heterosexism, misogyny, classism–we’re going to have a hard time dismantling them. Sometimes frustratingly, we have to be able to talk about these issues not only among our own identity and affinity groups, but with people whose ideas are vastly different from ours. So yes, I agree that trying to shut down conversations about sensitive topics is problematic. (Which is not the same, please note, as removing oneself from a conversation because of personal history or trauma.) More speech, please.

The thing is, though, the targets of these arguments–the oversensitive college student, the person who can’t take a joke, the “social justice warriors”–hardly ever seem to be asking for less speech. Perhaps there are exceptions, but I cannot think of a single anti-racist activist who wants people to stop talking about racism. When we ask that certain words not be used or that our histories be treated with understanding and respect, we are not questioning whether these conversations should happen, but how. To worry that such efforts are ruining free-spirited debate seems, to me, to be missing the point.

Rage and Resistance 101

Cherkira Lashley ’15 writes in:

RAGE and RESISTANCE 101 is a spoken word, music and dance performance that engages with ruminations on rage and resistance as a way to process the recent events in Baltimore, Ferguson, Chicago, New York, and more.

This event will feature: Circles & Ciphers, Cherkira Lashley, Markeisha Hill, Naomi Oyakhilome, Ismael Coleman, Monica Sun, David Stouck, Jillian Roberts, Sara Feldman

Date: Thursday, May 7th – tonight!
Time: 8:00pm
Place: Vanguard Lounge, Center for African American Studies

Updated: Track Team Boycotts Meet to Protest Scheduling Change


Photo by Nikita Rajgopal ’17

This morning, the Wesleyan Track Team boycotted their track meet at Amherst to protest an unfair scheduling change. The J. Elmer Swanson Invitational, an annual track meet hosted at Wesleyan, was abruptly cancelled so that the Men’s Lacrosse team could play on the turf field (the turf field was built in the middle of the track a few years ago). Members of the track team claim that the cancellation was due to the fact that many lacrosse team parents are big donors while the track team is comprised of many students receiving financial aid. Thus, the track team does not have the same financial clout. The track team sent an open letter explaining their reasoning as well as their demands for the future. I also reached out to the athletic department for comment and Athletic Director Mike Whalen’s response is below. 

Wescussion First Meeting

Misha VanEaton ’18 wants to talk to you:

Wescussion is a new student group working to create a space to allow non-judgmental, compassionate conversation with the purpose of fully understanding the complexity of universal, social, and individual issues. We’re going to have our first meeting to talk about how this can/should be created and whether spaces like this exist or are necessary on campus.

Contact mvaneaton(at)wesleyan(dot)edu for more information.

Date: Friday 4/3
Time: 2-3 p.m.
Place: Usdan 108

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Commemoration


Dawanna Butler ’15 writes in:

This is a panel presentation and discussion to explore various
perspectives on the recent events in Ferguson, Missouri and New York to commemorate the life, civil rights and social justice legacy that Dr. King has left. Come to listen, share, and try to understand these different viewpoints.

Date: Friday, January 30th
Time: 3:15-6:00 PM
Place:  Memorial Chapel