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Accounting for History: Race, Slavery and Institutional Memory

Date of Event: October 25, 2018

About the Panelists:

Deborah Gray WhiteDeborah Gray White is the Board of Governors Professor of History and professor of Women's and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. White currently heads the Scarlet and Black Project, which investigates Native Americans and African Americans in the history of Rutgers University.  With Professor Marisa Fuentes she is editor of the 2016 volume "Scarlet and Black: Slavery and Dispossession in Rutgers History." She is the author of the seminal book "Ar’n’t I A Woman? Female Slaves in the Plantation South" (W.W. Norton, 1985, 1999 [2nd edition]), "Too Heavy a Load: Black Women in Defense of Themselves, 1894-1994" (W.W. Norton, 1999), "Let My People Go, African Americans 1804-1860" (Oxford University Press, 1999), and "Lost in the USA: American Identity from the Promise Keepers to the Million Mom March" (University of Illinois Press, 2017).

Robert PattersonRobert J. Patterson is an associate professor of African American Studies and chair of the Department of African American Studies at Georgetown University. At Georgetown, he co-chaired the President's Racial Justice Working Group, which led the efforts to form the Department of African American Studies and the Georgetown University Racial Justice Institute. He is the author of "Destructive Desires: Rhythm and Blues Culture and the Politics of Racial Equality" (Rutgers, 2019) and "Exodus Politics: Civil Rights and Leadership in African American Literature and Culture" (University of Virginia Press, 2013). He is the editor of "Black Cultural Production After Civil Rights" (University of Illinois Press, 2019), and co-editor of "The Psychic Hold of Slavery: Legacies in American Culture" (Rutgers University Press, 2016). 

About the Program: Professors White and Patterson discuss how their institutions of higher education are reckoning with their difficult pasts in relation to slavery and racial injustice, why the work is important, and what steps still need to be taken. Holy Cross history professor Stephanie Yuhl prefaces the discussion with a review of Holy Cross's ties to slavery and what the College has done to date to address the legacy of slavery here. Nadine Knight, associate professor of English at Holy Cross, moderates the Q & A.

Read the report of the Healy/Mulledy Legacy Committee»

Watch the video below.