Through film, music, archival sources, and literary texts, researchers explore the role of the arts in expressing the pain and suffering of incarceration and social death, and the power of cultural resistance against discrimination, dehumanization, and enslavement.
What We Do
Rutgers, Research, and Global Racial Justice
Making visible a coherent, universitywide strategy regarding research activity in global racial justice.
Spanning Rutgers' diverse campuses situtated in three major New Jersey cities, from the large comprehensive research university in New Brunswick; to the deeply community-engaged urban research university and anchor institution in Newark, New Jersey's largest city; to the close-knit community of the small urban research university and anchor institution in Camden.
Directors' Signature Research Projects
Black Bodies, Black Health: Imagining a Just Racial Future
A Directors' Signature Research Project: Institute Founding and Executive Director Michelle Stephens, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University–New Brunswick and Senior Fellow Anna Branch, (Central), Senior Vice President of Equity and Professor of Sociology, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers–New Brunswick
Black Bodies, Black Health is a one-year research project, supported by a $725,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Through seed grants, workshops, conferences and both scholarly and public writing, Black Bodies, Black Health incentivizes humanists, social scientists, and biomedical researchers to engage in interdisciplinary work to explore and unpack structural racism in service of creating equitable health outcomes.
Image credit: Chidiebere Ibe
Poets and Scholars Summer Writing Retreat 2022
A Directors' Signature Research Project: Institute Codirector Gregory Pardlo, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University–Camden
The Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice at Rutgers University–Camden, with generous support from the Mellon Foundation, is pleased to announce its second annual Poets and Scholars Summer Writing Retreat: Bodies of Text: Crafting Equity in the Language of Care, from July 11-21, 2022.
Image credit: Chidiebere Ibe
Scarlet and Black Research Center
A Directors' Signature Research Project: Institute Director Erica Armstrong Dunbar, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University–New Brunswick
The Scarlet and Black Research Center convenes researchers and practitioners across the humanities to examine the global dimensions of anti-Black racism. The center derives its vision from the Scarlet and Black research project which began at Rutgers as historians’ exploration of the historical connections between slavery and the university.
The Inclusion Project hires Youth Organizers for the "Leadership for Educational Liberation" Program
A Directors' Signature Research Project: Institute Director Elise Boddie, School of Arts and Sciences-Newark, Rutgers University–Newark.
Building on the Leadership for Real Integration workshop series that concluded in April 2021, the 8-week program will bring together Youth Organizers to engage with the history and fundamental principles of organizing and policy development through a series of weekly roundtables and seminars focused on racial equity and inclusion in educational law and public policy in New Jersey.
Learn more about the "Leadership for Educational Liberation" Program here.
The Quilting Water Undergraduate Prize
A Directors' Signature Research Project: Institute Codirector Patrick Rosal, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University–Camden with Cross-Campus Director of Undergraduate Intellectual Life Carlos Decena, School of Arts and Sciences, Rutgers University-New Brunswick.
ISGRJ at Rutgers-Camden, in conjunction with the ISGRJ Office of Undergraduate Intellectual life, is launching the inaugural, university-wide Quilting Water Undergraduate Prize.
Six winners will be selected from all three Rutgers campuses and will each receive a $1000 award. The cohort will receive group mentoring by poet and artist Krista Franklin, who currently serves as a consultant to Quilting Water. Over the course of the latter half of 2022, the student-artists will gather a few interviews for the Quilting Water archive and make art in conversation with the stories the Quilting Water has already gathered.
View the flyer. Please visit this page again for an announcement of this year's winners.
Projects, Research, Seminars & Public Engagement
From long-term research examining racist social policy across centuries, to highly-focused seminars for undergraduates, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows, to performances and exhibits featuring the works of influential and emerging Black artists, the institute applies its humanistic approach to social and racial justice in shaping engagement with the academy at large, the classroom, and the general public.
Educational Justice grants support research activity in the racial and social justice space across Rutgers’ campuses. Directors focus on projects rather than one-time academic events. This structure of projects provides vehicles for faculty across the campuses to find in the Institute a different kind of space, one that can move more nimbly, foster collaborations, pilot experimental programs, and move between the academy and the public or the academy and surrounding communities.
These interdisciplinary seminars focus on the struggle for global, racial, and social justice through such topics as public arts, education, health, public policy, social justice, and criminal justice. Seminars can be short (two months), medium (one semester), or long (year-long) and can be campus-based, cross-campus, or universitywide. Proposals that encourage and include participation from graduate students and other Rutgers constituencies beyond tenured faculty will be given special consideration.
Projects and initiatives housed administratively at or affiliated with ISGRJ contribute to the institute’s overall direction and vision regarding such areas of inquiry as K–12 education, social justice, public policy, public health, criminal justice, public arts, and pedagogy.
The inaugural virtual statewide conference was held on June 11, 2022. The first in a series of meetings, this conference for educators, community stakeholders, youth and researchers intended to produce an educational equity agenda for the state. The issues addressed included disparities in resources and outcomes, funding, discipline, resource allocation, pre-school, opportunity youth, post-secondary outcomes. special education and segregation.
A low-key, low-stress lunch talk series aimed at Rutgers Newark Faculty to come together, hang out, and share what they are working on.
Frank Garcia: “Revising the Language of #OwnVoices: Racial/Ethnic Authenticity, Controlling Images, and Gang Life in American Literature” on April 14, 2022.
Domingo Morel: “Developing Scholars: Race, Politics, and the Pursuit of Higher Education” on May 11, 2022.
This marquee event for the Institute's "Occasions for Gathering" Series took place virtually on Wednesday, April 27th at 7pm.
Acclaimed poets Patrick Rosal and Tracy K. Smith read together on the occasion of the publication of Rosal’s The Last Thing: New and Selected Poems and Smith’s Such Color: New And Selected Poems.
This event was hosted by The Writers House at Rutgers University-Camden
The series features group conversations moderated by the Institute's Rutgers-Camden Codirector Greg Pardlo on the following topics: Writers Belonging to Communities, Communities Belonging to Writers on 3/2, Writers Centering Community on 4/6 and Amplifying Community Voices on 5/4.
The Institute for the Study of Global Racial Justice in partnership with the Office of the Chancellor-Provost at Rutgers University—New Brunswick and Rutgers University Libraries proudly presented its inaugural ISGRJ-New Brunswick event: "To Turn the Light of Truth Upon Them" | Black Women, Justice, and the Power of the Pen | An Evening on the Soundstage with Nikole Hannah-Jones on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, at 7PM.
A collaboration of ISGRJ and the Rutgers iTV studio, this video, which premiered on September 23, 2021, serves as a virtual "showcase for the breadth and depth of racial justice work at Rutgers and the transformational impact—both local and global—that it’s having." — Professor Elise Boddie, Institute Campus Director at Rutgers University–Newark.