Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice
Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice
Video: Murals for Justice, DreamPlay Media
“It all comes back to how we think about ourselves and others. The need to redefine the concept of being human and move toward global racial justice begins by understanding and addressing the ways we resist recognizing people who live under different circumstances than our own.”
— Michelle Stephens, Founding and Executive Director
The Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice is a conduit for new knowledge and ideas, providing opportunities for Rutgers faculty whose inquiries address racism and social inequality to work collaboratively and effect meaningful action and positive change. In bringing together scholars from multiple humanities disciplines across Rutgers—from law to language, from philosophy to art, from history to gender studies—the institute serves as a universitywide intellectual corridor that escalates the likelihood that their explorations and findings will inform real-world decisions, providing solutions to problems that have been increasingly thrust into sharp focus in the United States and around the globe.
Moving in the Local while Mapping Oneself in the Global
“I think of what we’ve been doing as a process that has been slow but also very vitalizing. Moving in the local while mapping oneself in the global. And to my mind that is what the mission of this Institute is”
— Michelle Stephens, Founding and Executive Director
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The Sawyer Seminar at Rutgers-Newark
The Mellon Foundation has awarded a $225,000 grant to Rutgers University—Newark to support a Sawyer Seminar on the Comparative Study of Cultures. The 2022-2023 Mellon Sawyer Seminar, “Natives and Nativists, Migrants and Immigrants in an American City,” draws together prominent scholars, activists, and educators to trace the origins of today’s anti-Asian hate, grapple with its continuing legacies, and envision ways to fight it in the present moment.
The seminar series will be organized by Belinda Edmondson, ISGRJ Senior Faculty Fellow and Professor of African American and African Studies, Kornel Chang, Associate Professor in History and American Studies, and Sean Mitchell, associate professor in Sociology and Anthropology, and will feature events in the fall 2022 and spring 2023 semesters.
Race, Labor and Public Policy Fellows
The Institute is pleased to introduce its new Race, Labor and Public Policy Fellowship focused specifically on the relationship between, and translation of, research and public policy writing and activism.
Congratulations to our first two fellows, James Jones (Africana Studies, School of Arts and Sciences, Newark) and Sheri Davis Faulkner (School of Management and Labor Relations, New Brunswick), who will be planning and leading a series of activities for the program — including public events and workshops around books that demonstrate the blend of scholarly, humanities-based approaches, public policy writing and research projects with undergraduates in this area.
Fellows in Racial Justice Learning Community
The Fellows in Racial Justice Learning Community at the ISGRJ is a new program which aims to identify, accompany and mentor generations of life-long intellectual activists in racial justice.
This project will center and maximize the intellectual capital and cultural resources of students, many of whom have been systematically disenfranchised and excluded from knowledge production and centers of power. Fellows will learn and pursue projects to renew, enrich, and maximize on-going racial justice efforts on campus to impact social change locally and globally, empowering them with the critical analysis, knowledge, and skills necessary to be lifelong, trans-national activists focused on racial justice.
The Fellows in Racial Justice Learning Community is open to all Sophomores - Seniors from all three Rutgers University Campuses. There is no minimum GPA requirement. We are looking for students who are passionate about social justice and activism, have diverse positionalities, are interested in thinking from embodied personal and collective experiences, and showing up for their communities.
The application window has now closed.
For some time now, it has been a foregone conclusion among most observers that the U.S. Supreme Court is poised by next summer to end the practice by colleges and universities of using race as a factor in admissions.
Read the recent Newsweek article featuring Stacy Hawkins, Vice Dean of Rutgers Law School and ISGRJ Senior Faculty Fellow.
Our congratulations to Dr. Patricia Akhimie, Director of the RaceB4Race Mentorship Network and Associate Professor of English at Rutgers University-Newark, on being named Director of the Folger Institute following a national search. She will lead the Folger’s scholarly programs and fellowships, supporting new and established forms of scholarship in the early modern humanities and making new connections with working scholars and the public.
Read this analysis in The Washington Post about how Black Latinos — and Dominicans, in particular — could help bridge two often divided marginalized communities by Early Career Faculty Fellow and Assistant Professor of Political Science and Latino and Caribbean Studies Yalidy Matos, and Assistant Professor of Political Science Domingo Morel.
The new PBS documentary which premieres on October 4, 2022 offers fresh perspectives and insights into the inspiring woman who repeatedly risked her own life and freedom to liberate others from slavery.
Inaugural ISGRJ Early Career Faculty Fellow Kendra Boyd and our Scarlet and Black Research Project Manager and Digital Archivist Jesse Bayker will lead the project which will compile testimonies tracing the history of Black life and activism in the city and on the campus.
Rutgers Law School Co-dean Kimberly Mutcherson writes about the chaos the decision to overturn Roe v. Wade has unleashed across the country in an op-ed on NJ.com.
Faculty across Rutgers share why it's important to mark Juneteenth and what are appropriate ways to honor the holiday that commemorates the end of slavery in the United States.
Rutgers-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor's op-ed explains why it's time to give DACA recipients a path to citizenship.
"School segregation is the epicenter of racial injustice, not just because of its material consequences—such as how it leads to systemic underfunding of urban schools—but also because it conditions people to be suspicious, distrustful, and resentful of those who are different. We often think about school segregation as a problem faced by Black and Latino children. But segregation also harms white children. We’ve known this for some time."
Yesterday marked the 100th anniversary of the dedication of the Lincoln Memorial, one of the nation's greatest monuments. But while the building was conceived as a shrine and a temple, it quickly took on another role—as the nation's premier backdrop for demonstrations demanding social change.
Dunbar talks about how the Lincoln Memorial set the scene for monumental moments throughout US history.
Much of the U.S. could criminalize abortion. But how will those laws be enforced? NPR talks with reproductive rights lawyer Kim Mutcherson about how restrictive abortion laws would be enforced if Roe v. Wade is overturned or weakened.
"Opening the Gates to Global Racial Justice:"
Two creative writing professors from Rutgers–Camden are leading signature efforts of the Rutgers Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice
(Spring 2022 Edition)
Rutgers University—Newark Professor and Institute Senior Faculty Fellow Salamishah Tillet was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in criticism for her New York Times essays on race in arts and culture.
Tillet, a Henry Rutgers Professor of African American Studies & Creative Writing and a contributing critic at large at The New York Times, won the Pulitzer Prize in criticism for what the judges called “learned and stylish writing about Black stories in art and popular culture.”
In the latest episode of Faces & Voices, Rutgers President Jonathan Holloway interviewed Boddie about the road that led her to Rutgers–from the time she recognized her purpose as a student at Harvard Law School to her experiences clerking for Judge Robert L. Carter and serving as director of litigation for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. to being appointed founding Newark director of Rutgers’ Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice.
This award is given annually to tenured faculty members in recognition of outstanding service in stimulating and guiding the intellectual development of students at Rutgers University.
The award honors a faculty member (Assistant or Associate Professor, tenure-track or non-tenure track) whose research area disrupts or transforms the interface of two disparate fields of scholarship or inquiry.
Judge Erika Meitner wrote the following about his work: "Reading Patrick Rosal’s The Last Thing: New & Selected Poems is an embodied experience; these poems jump off the page with a muscular exuberance. You can hear their raw emotions singing in your gut, and feel their language in the sway of your limbs...Rosal’s is a poetry of grief and loss, survival and perseverance, as much as it’s a poetry of ecstatic joy and humming eroticism. I chose this book because it moved me immeasurably."
"Rutgers must distribute opportunities equitably across all Rutgers campuses. Whether we consider investments in residence halls, classrooms, course variety, student services, staff or faculty pay, it is clear that Camden and Newark do not hold a candle next to the high-intensity football stadium lights of New Brunswick."
Quoting Patrick Rapa, For The Philly Inquirer:
"To my mind, poetry is best enjoyed aloud and in person. One poet I saw perform at AWP, Patrick Rosal — a Rutgers Camden professor with words like Guggenheim and Fulbright on his CV — crushed it with a midafternoon performance of emphatic, hip-hop-inflected verse. His words boomed across the ballroom. The applause was considerable. Good stuff."
"After witnessing the election of the first Black president and then the first Black and first female vice president, it is truly extraordinary as a Black woman to now bear witness to the first Black woman being confirmed to the US Supreme Court. These things seemed almost inconceivable in my youth, and now they are a reality."
Supporters of a lawsuit accusing the state of perpetuating segregated schools held a lunchtime rally in Trenton on Thursday, March 31.
The dozens who attended represented a cross-section of youth, faith, social justice, and civil rights groups who want state leaders to demolish, what a study determined to be, the home of some of the most segregated schools in the country.
Our new ISGRJ research project “Black Bodies, Black Health: Imagining a Just Racial Future,” funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation awarded Professor Williams with a grant for her research into racial divides in breast cancer detection and outcomes in underserved communities.
Rutgers renewed its commitment to develop a more diverse, equitable and inclusive environment through a new plan released Wednesday, March 30, that lays out concrete steps toward a university that models inclusive excellence.
Thursday, March 3 will mark an historic occasion as the court hears oral arguments in Latino Action Network et al. v. State of New Jersey about whether the state is liable for its segregated schools.
ISGRJ Newark Director Elise Boddie and Retired NJ Supreme Court Justice Gary Stein played a key role in facilitating the case.
ISGRJ Camden Codirector Patrick Rosal has been honored with a NJ Council of the Arts Award for his work and a proposed book based on his essay "Mutual Regard: A Love Letter for The Origins of Black-Filipino Resistance."
“What does the average person know about the Black elite in New York in the 1880s? The answer is very little if anything. There’s this huge gap between the Civil War and slavery and then, maybe, the Harlem Renaissance — as if nothing happened in between.”
Photograph by Alison Cohen Rosa/HBO
"...While the inclusion of a Black woman to the court would not shift the conservative majority, it would mark the first time that a large segment of Americans would feel represented by those in power. That visibility alone could go a long way in influencing career choices."
Photograph by Amber Ford/NY Times
Rutgers University — Newark ranks number one in the nation for “return on investment” among institutions with a high percentage of low-income students, according to a new report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce. “This study highlights a critically important way of looking at the quality of higher education institutions: how well we facilitate social mobility,” said Rutgers-Newark Chancellor Nancy Cantor.
Rutgers University-Newark has appointed ISGRJ Senior Faculty Fellow Salamishah Tillet as Executive Director of Express Newark. Established in 2017 as a center for socially engaged art and design, Express Newark brings together the community, the campus, and the City of Newark to make art that matters, address our city’s most prevailing social justice issues, and to advocate for systemic change.
ISGRJ Newark Director and Rutgers Law Professor Elise Boddie joins Chris Hayes on MSNBC along with The Nation's Elie Mystal to discuss President Biden's vow to nominate a Black woman to The Supreme Court, and what's at stake as The Supreme Court revisits affirmative action in college admissions.
From the creator of “Downton Abbey,” the new series, set in the late 19th-century, dramatizes the rift between New York City’s wealthy elite and the abject poverty and inequality of the same era. Image credit: Alison Cohen Rosa/HBO
Rutgers University–Camden goes "beyond the dream" to explore Martin Luther King Jr.’s lasting imprint on society with a virtual speaker series during the month of January. Kendra Boyd and Jesse Bayker are featured presenters.
Rutgers–Newark is joining a network of scholars working to uncover the beginnings of modern conceptions of race and racism through the study of pre-modern times through a $3.5 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
The new Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice is bringing together 12 Rutgers scholars and six postdoctoral fellows from universities across the country who will interact with the public on important issues ranging from K–12 education, social justice, policy reform, public health, and criminal justice.
Elise Boddie, Rutgers University–Newark campus director for the Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice, in a discussion featuring retired New Jersey Supreme Court Justice Gary S. Stein, talks about May 17 as an important and significant date in the history of racial justice, and what it means for equity in education and the future of our public schools.
Faculty from across Rutgers share their responses to the conviction of the former Minneapolis police officer in the death of George Floyd.
Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice founding executive director Michelle Stephens interviews Rutgers president Jonathan Holloway about his new book, The Cause of Freedom: A Concise History of African Americans, published by Oxford University Press.
Racial Justice Events
● Race in the Arts and Humanities ●
● Transforming Social Justice Values into Policies ●
Tuesday, September 06, 2022, 9:00 a.m.-Wednesday, December 14, 2022, 9:00 p.m. | Mary H. Dana Women Artists Series Galleries, Douglass Library, New Brunswick
Wednesday, September 28, 2022, 9:00 a.m.-Friday, April 07, 2023, 5:00 p.m. | Express Newark, Newark
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