This past weekend, scholars and activists from around the country gathered for the second national URBAN convening, at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. (We will be reporting more on this meeting as soon as possible, in an upcoming newsletter.) One of the outcomes of this meeting is an urgent open letter, as members of URBAN, in solidarity with the student protestors at the University of Missouri.
Faculty voices are important in informing popular media coverage of the student protests– especially as the mainstream storyline quickly shifts from the students’ important demands for racial and social justice to individualizing debates around free speech and political correctness. Shifting the blame to protesters rather than the institution ignores the generations of exclusion of African Americans, Latinxs and other marginalized groups from the University of Missouri.
URBAN members have been signing in support of this letter. URBAN membership includes a wide geographic, institutional, and racial and ethnic diversity, with scholars at various stages of their careers whose research directly implicates and elucidates the institutional failures and structural bases that animate student protesters. Therefore, URBAN member support of this letter emphasizes the urgency of the student protestors’ actions, as their demands are further taken up and expanded on other campuses across the country.
Affiliations are listed in the signatory page only for identification and do not imply any institutional endorsement.
José Z. Calderón, Pitzer College
Dayna Cunningham, Community Innovators Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Michelle Fine, Graduate Center, City University of New York
Celina Su, Graduate Center, City University of New York
Mark R. Warren, McCormack Graduate School, University of Massachusetts Boston
URBAN National Co-Chairs