In January, Professor john a. powell, Professor of Law and Professor of African-American Studies and Ethnic Studies at the University of California, Berkeley, kicked off WRAG’s “Putting Racism on the Table” lecture series. In a succinct, energetic lecture, he shared with local philanthropic leaders his views on how he believes structural racialization impacts our society and all of us. While we titled our first session, “Structural Racism,” Professor powell shared why he prefers the term, “structural racialization.” He believes that “racism” is too tied to personal animus, sometimes preventing an objective look at how structures – the education system, the Electoral College, the housing market, etc. – marginalize people of color and weaken the fabric of our society.
Please find a time for you and your colleagues – or your friends and family – to gather together to watch “Putting Racism on the Table.” There will be six videos: structural racism, white privilege, implicit bias, mass incarceration, the racial mosaic of America, and the role that philanthropy is playing across the country to address racism. For each, a one-hour presentation is given by an expert. After each lecture, we have provided a discussion guide to structure your conversation, but we suspect that the lecture on its own will provoke your thinking.
We hope that you will share your thoughts on the series in general or on the specific topic via Twitter, using the hashtag #PuttingRacismOnTheTable, and on WRAG’s Facebook page.
Anthropologist Margaret Mead reminded us, “Never underestimate the power of a small group of committed people to change the world. In fact, it is the only thing that ever has.” As you watch this video and the others in the series, you will become a part of a small group of committed people ready to change the world.