ER&M Professor Daniel HoSang and members of the Anti-Racist Teaching and Learning Collective (ARTLC) shared their thought on the urgency and significance of dismantling racism in the classroom with CT Mirror. Prof. HoSang co-founded ARTLC, a network of Connecticut teachers who, even in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, are developing, implementing and sharing curricula to dismantle racism from their classrooms outwards. An added bonus, the article is written by ER&M rising senior Isabella Zou!
My colleagues and I have been reflecting on the power of your work this spring. You more than fulfilled our hopes for shared learning in diaspora by completing bold projects while attending to the concerns of your families and communities. We found special meaning in celebrating the Class of 2020. Graduation is a cherished rite for marking new beginnings, and even at a distance, it seemed to defend against the tremendous costs imposed by the pandemic and the forces that isolate us. That was at least our hope, that we would find new ways forward in one another.
The murder of George Floyd, just one week after our commencement, calls us together once again, now in shared pain and the demand for justice. Protesters have taken up other hallowed rites to make a stand for him, for Breonna Taylor, for Ahmaud Arbery, and for the countless more whose names are no longer remembered or declaimed in public.
I write simply to be with you, now, in anger and in defiance, against all that denies these brothers and sisters their rightful places in this world.
Our traditions of learning demand that we reckon openly and honestly with racial terror and anti-Black violence. It is a violence manifested not only by police and vigilantes, but under cover by actuaries, zoning boards, and demagogues. By the ones who set the price of admission to the protections of safe housing, resourced schools, preventative medicine, sustenance and clean water – in short, life in all its abundance. To be educated at this moment in the world means ensuring that learning as a gateway to mobility and belonging cannot belong to a precious few.
Whatever university plans unfold for the coming academic year, the anguish laid bare in these protests will be with us. I know that ER&M students will help make our teaching and scholarship responsive to the calls for attention emerging from afflicted communities. Your experience, your questions, and your understanding open vitally important windows of social possibility.
Know this too, that we are a community of care. Please check in with one another and reach out for support when you need it. When things are too much, we can find refuge in one another and in that wild imagination that is the privileged birthright of every living being.
With respect and concern for your friends and families,
Alicia Schmidt Camacho
Professor and Chair of Ethnicity, Race, and Migration
Recently, Teen Vogue profiled Asian American teens who are helping their small-business owning families weather the impacts of the pandemic. Among these incredible teens is ER&M rising senior Kevin Chen. Read about Kevin’s inspiring story here.
ER&M alumni Joshua Jelly-Shapiro ER&M ’02 and Carina del Valle Schorske ER&M ’10 contribute their perspectives in “Pandemic Journal,” a running series of dispatches by New York Review writers that is documenting the coronavirus outbreak with updates from around the world that began March 17–22 and has continued through March 23–29, March 30–April 5, and April 6–12. Continue reading.
It’s been three weeks since I left Yale and came back to my home in Tokyo, Japan. It’s sad this happened in the middle of my last semester at Yale, but I am grateful to have a home to go back to and family to stay with. Continue reading
March 23, 2020
My dear students,
I greet you from the empty palace. Stiles College, where I live, stands quiet, and the stillness of this campus is stranger yet. From where I sit, I can see the buds of a dogwood tree beginning to open, and a few snowflakes are falling to complete a picture of the day – not even the land seems to know what season we are in. Continue reading