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Multicultural symposium asks what racism means now

November 09, 2010

Undergraduate Campus

The election of the first African American president in 2008 generated conversations about race and justice around the country, leaving some to ask whether the election marked the end of racism in America.

The annual Ray Warren Multicultural Symposium at Lewis & Clark (Nov. 10-12) will offer three days of lectures, panel discussions, and performances exploring what it means to talk about racism in 2010. Distinguished speakers from around the country and from within the local community will discuss issues of race and social justice, including responses to the growth of Islam in America.

In the following video, representatives from Portland’s Muslim Educational Trust—an organization with an Islamic school and educational and advocacy programs—offer their thoughts on the state of racism in America today and their hopes for encouraging dialogue and increasing understanding in the future.

Highlights of the symposium
  • “Digital Zapatismo: From Electronic Civil Disobedience to the Transborder Immigrant Tool” Activist and new media artist Ricardo Dominguez, associate professor of visual arts at UC-San Diego, recently helped create a GPS cellphone safety net tool for crossing the Mexico/U.S. border. November 10, 4 p.m.
  • “Indigenous Expressions: Living With Historical Trauma” Marcie Rendon is a playwright, poet, performance artist and an enrolled member of the White Earth Anishinabe Nation. She is the co-author of “Native Artists: Livelihoods, Resources, Space, and Gifts,” a study exploring the ways in which Native people draw on spirit and resiliency to create beauty in the face of extreme pain. November 10, 7 p.m.
  • “The Color of Change: How Racial Inequality Works Today” Princeton professor Imani Perry is an interdisciplinary scholar who studies race and African American culture using law, literary and cultural studies, music, and the social sciences. She is the author of the forthcoming book “More Beautiful and More Terrible: The Embrace and Transcendence of Racial Inequality in the United States.” November 11, 7 p.m.
  • Panel discussions held each day will feature students, faculty, and community leaders addressing topics like the rise of Islamophobia in America, race and justice in schools, the history of controversial images in the media, and how art can serve as a vehicle for social justice.

All events are free and open to the public. Visit the symposium website for the complete schedule and venue information.

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