Four UDARI Sub-Committees Awarded Grants for Spring 2021

Posted on February 20, 2021 at: 7:35 pm

Congratulations to the recipients of the UD Antiracism Initiative’s Small Grants for Subcommittees for Spring 2021

The Anti-Racist Curriculum in PK-12 Schools (ARC) subcommittee proposed to hire a graduate student to help to identify and analyze social studies standards from other states in order to inform and guide recommendations for revising Delaware’ social studies standards. The ARC is currently regularly meeting with Delaware State legislators and senators to help create an antiracist social studies curriculum. The social studies standards provide direction in terms of the extent students are required to examine the key concepts pertaining to race and antiracism and also guide whether the curriculum includes space for white resistance to African Americans’ progress, women’s movement, stories of Latino and Asian immigration, and tales of resilience and protests by those of minoritized groups. The findings from the analysis will be shared with the legislature members of the Delaware Black Caucus who are recommending changes to make Delaware’s social studies curriculum more antiracist and inclusive. Co-chairs: Barry Joyce and Christina

First State First Chance subcommittee proposed a grant to cover the enrollment of two incarcerated students (with a strong preference on the part of UDARI for funding two underrepresented minority students) in Spring 2021 in Professor David Teague’s ENGL 207-710, Introduction to Poetry, the first AAP course to be offered to incarcerated students. This course will allow piloting of the AAP in Delaware prisons and will prepare Honors and the AAP to launch the first cohort of the First State First Chance program in Fall 2021. Prison education is explicitly anti-racist work. The US prison system is rooted in white supremacy and functions as a strategy to remove Black bodies from the social & political economy. In Delaware, Black people constitute 23% of state residents, but 56% of the incarcerated population. Seventy percent of Black men without a high school diploma will be incarcerated in their lifetimes, returning to society without the tools they need and with barriers including a felony record. Offering incarcerated people of all races and genders the opportunity to earn a college degree is a matter of social justice and can be articulated as a form of reparations; to those who were once denied an opportunity for an education and access to social, educational and cultural capital, prison education can provide a pathway to full citizenship. Chair: Chrysanthi Leon

The Visual and Performing Arts (VPA) sub-committee proposed a multi-phase project titled: Art and Positive Change: Using the Arts for Antiracism, Cultural Diversity, and Social Justice. Two workshops for UD students (e.g., Registered Student Organizations and Fraternities and Sororities) will be led by facilitators who are well versed in addressing antiracism and cultural diversity. The facilitators will stimulate productive dialogue on these difficult issues, leading to exploring the ways the arts can be a voice for expression. UD students will be invited to submit an original artistic or creative response/piece that will be part of an online showcase. Participants will create up to a 2-minute video recording demonstrating their work in relationship to the theme of Art and Positive Change: Using the Arts for Antiracism, Cultural Diversity, and Social Justice. Participants will enter their recordings in an adjudicated contest to be showcased and presented to the entire UD community via a virtual Creative Gallery that advances access to diverse antiracism perspectives with a mission of affecting positive change. Chair: Suzanne Burton

The Asian-American Antiracism (AAA) subcommittee proposed a series of three events in spring. Each event comprises a public film screening, a structured panel of discussion that includes film producer(s) and experts, structured questions from graduate students, and finally a Q&A eriod open to all participants. The AAA is committed to two intertwined efforts: first, establishing a safe and welcoming environment for Asians & Asian Americans at UD and second, establishing a bridge between people of Asian descent and other underrepresented groups in order to generate a more integrated community at UD. The subcommittee seeks through its selections of the three films to bridge underrepresented groups that have been targeted by racism and to illuminate the oft-forgotten history of cross-racial alliances in U.S. history. It also seeks to create conversations that cut across what might have been perceived as racial divides between Asians & Asian Americans and those of other underrepresented groups. For the public community, it aims at establishing an opportunity for public exchange and open discussion of racism and antiracism. Subcommittee members recognize that one underlying factor of racism is the subtle pervasiveness of unpronounced racialized politics and everyday micro-aggressions. Chair: Vimalin Rujivacharakal