Tag Archives: students of color

The Men of Color Talks

men-of-color-talks-2016From Invisible Men:

At the Men of Color Talks, Invisible Men invites Wesleyan students, faculty, staff, and Middletown residents over dinner to discuss issues that pertain to men of color on campus, in the Middletown community, and broader social contexts.

The event is open to the public
This Jamaican food is about to be poppin’- don’t miss out

Date: Wednesday, October 19
Time: 7-9 PM
Place: The Vanguard Lounge in the Center of African American Studies

Students of Color Publish a List of Demands on IsThisWhy.com

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Hundreds of students have been protesting about racial inequality present on campus, and today — known as the National Day of Action — a list of demands written by students of color went live on the website IsThisWhy.com:

Demands

President Michael Roth, past presidents, and the bureaucracy of this institution have actively neglected to address issues that pertain to students of color and empower them with the same level of resources, consideration, and inclusion historically available to white students. Thus, we present the following demands:

WE DEMAND EQUITY & INCLUSION

We, members of  the student of color community (SOC), demand to be holistically included as part of Wesleyan University’s student body, to have our demands heard on campus, and to be recognized and respected as individuals, not simply as numbers to fill the institution’s diversity quota.

STATEMENT OF ACCOUNTABILITY

We demand a written statement addressed to the Wesleyan Community, within 48 hours, from the President of Wesleyan University, Michael Roth, and Vice President for Equity and Inclusion/Title IX Officer, Antonio Farias, to commit to these demands by the specified deadlines via an action plan that works towards a more equitable and inclusive campus environment. This statement should highlight the administration’s inaction and lack of dedication to adequately support students of color and acknowledge the ways that the senior administrators have failed the SOC community, including but not limited to:

An Open Letter to the Wesleyan Community from Students of Color

The following is an open letter to the Wesleyan community from a group of students of color. It appeared earlier today on The Ankh‘s Facebook page and has been published here with these students’ permission. The views reflected here are the writers’ own.

photo by Jacob Seltzer ’17

To the Wesleyan Campus Community:

To be black in an anti-black society is to be a commodity fit for liquidation, it is to be already evidenced as not befitting of life, it is to live under surveillance and always positioned as a potential threat, it is living under the conditions of imprisonment (of our senses of self, expressions, bodies, gender articulations, and sexualities).

So when we say that Black Lives Matter, we are not implying that other lives do not matter. We are reaffirming our existence in a country that continues to do everything it can to demolish and obliterate black and brown lives. By speaking out against institutional, structural, and systemic racism, by affirming Black Lives Matter, we are liberating ourselves from these systems of oppression.

We do not have the time, nor luxury, to be caught up in this smokescreen of free speech. Let us be clear: this is not an issue of your free speech. This is an issue of our voices being silenced, our communities under attack. Free speech is not a one-dimensional highway—white, cisgender, heterosexual men are not the only ones with the right to free speech.

When students of color speak our lives into existence, our speech comes under attack. When we defend our lives, we are harassing you. When we demand safety, we are attacking you. Our unapologetic voices are deranged screams; our open hands are clenched fists; our cellphones, weapons, our pigment, targets.

First Middle Eastern Perspectives Meeting

perspectivesFrom the incredible Rajaa Elidrissi ’16:

Come join us for our first meeting of the year!

Our group’s goal is to create a comfortable and safe space for people who identify as Middle Eastern, Arab, Persian, Turkish, and etc. We also want members that do not identify as Middle Eastern, but who are interested in learning more about the region and its people to participate as well. We want to provide a view of the region that is not tarnished by western media. Topics of discussion will include identity, religion, intersectionality, feminism, media perceptions, gender roles, and etc.

We are also part of the Student of Color Coalition and we want to collaborate with as many SOC groups as possible this year!

Date: Wednesday, September 23
Time:8:30-9:30 PM
Place: Usdan 108
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On Black History Month

Black History Month, for as long as we have been students at Wesleyan, has been the only time during the year that Ujamaa has had a significant and visible presence on campus. This is in stark contrast to the historical roots of Ujamaa, which was formed to serve as a space for the Student of Color community to build relationships and community with one another and really strengthen themselves against a campus that at the time (and more often than we’re willing to admit now) was systematically separating, tokenizing, and in no uncertain terms, oppressing them.

Black History Month, then, was a space for community development, education about critical issues going on in the African diaspora, and a reclamation and centering of topics that weren’t being taught on Wesleyan’s campus. It served as a reflection of the state of the collective and the state of the Student of Color community.

This is still true. However, the efforts of community development, education, and campus awareness have not been the premise of Ujamaa’s current mission. Before we have a Black History Month, the events that take place during this month should be reflective of the community that it represents. Last semester, however, there was one Ujamaa collective meeting. The planning of Black History Month has taken place completely within the confines of the Ujamaa board members. This does not mean that the events would necessarily be bad, but it does highlight that Black History Month is not reflective of the community as a whole.

Black History Month, as it stands on campus, is a performative activity.

Be The Art Accepting Submissions

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An exciting opportunity from Yiyang Wang ’15:

Be The Art is an exhibition in Zilkha Gallery that showcases artwork created by students of color. The opening reception is on February 20th and we need your work by February 1st (preferably asap)! This year, we’re accepting photos, paintings, drawings, sculptures, music, and videos so if you or anyone you know is interested, fill out this googledoc.

“Be the art you wish to see in the world” – Gandhi definitely said this

Date: NOW until February 1st, 2014
Place: the google
Cost: absolutely nothing

Submit to Be The Art Show in Zilkha

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Jean-Michel Basquiat, Yatta Zoker ’14 and Sydney Lowe ’13 (um, that’s me) are writing in to remind you to submit your artwork to the upcoming Be The Art gallery show in Zilkha ASAP:

Be The Art is an art exhibition in Zilkha Gallery that showcases visual artwork created by students of color. The show goes up in February and we need your work as soon as possible! Don’t forget to bring your photos, paintings, drawings, sculptures, and videos back to school!

Deadline: February 8
Contact: Email yzoker@wes and slowe@wes with your artwork

Misunderstanding Minority

From Christian Hosam ’15:

Given the recent racially charged incidents that have occurred on campus and general feelings of discontent with the university’s attitudes toward the Student of Color community, it is more important than ever that we stand together. In and outside of Wesleyan, however, there is a tendency to refer to people of color in exceedingly narrow terms, particularly as African Americans and, to a lesser extent, Latino/a American. But why? Why do Asian-Americans, Native Americans, mixed-raced persons, or anyone who doesn’t fall into the category of Black/Latino often feel as though they are not included in our campus (and societal) conception of Student of Color, particularly when the commonalities that we share are certainly larger than our differences. “Misunderstanding Minority” will explore what keeps us disunited as students of color and how we can come together to utilize our shared experiences to enact effective change.

Date: TONIGHT, November 29
Time: 7pm
Place: Daniel Family Commons
Facebook: Herezzz
RSVP: Hurrrr

“No Colored People” Flyer in Usdan

We got a tip that there were flyers posted in Usdan during the Holi celebration that read “No colored people allowed in Usdan.” And then I saw a photo of one (above), along with a “crazy coincidence” Jezebel article called “Hipster Racism,” shared a bunch of times on my Facebook news feed. Thanks to Luz Rivera ’13 for uploading the picture, and also for writing the appropriate commentary on it in red. These flyers were apparently posted on all of the entrances to the building, and according to Joanne Rafferty, Associate Director of Operations at Usdan, they were not put up by Usdan staff. The flyers have since been taken down. If anyone has any more information about this, sound off in the comments section. Many students are already incredibly offended by this act, saying it’s as insensitive as the anti-affirmative action bake sale that took place in 2010.

Update: Katherine Y. ’12 made the flyers because Shakti was asked not to make a mess in Usdan by Usdan staff. Her apology: 

As a part of the Homosex Agenda

Do you identify as a queer person of color? Come hang out with others who do! Spectrum, the queer students of color collective, is kicking off its first meeting this Tuesday with snacks and fun times. For any question/comments/etc, email echan@wesleyan.edu.

  • Date: Tuesday, September 13th (and every subsequent Tuesday)
  • Time: 9pm
  • Place: University Organizing Center (190 High Street, between Beta & Eclectic)
  • Cost: Just bring your fabulous self