Counter-Narratives and Community-Driven Research for Racial Equity in Detroit

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Date: March 5, 2020
Time: 12:30 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Location: Faculty/Administration #2339 | Map
656 W. Kirby
Detroit, MI 48202
Category: Lecture

The Humanities Center is proud to present as part of its Brown Bag Series, a talk by Peter Blackmer, Research Fellow with the Detroit Equity Action Lab, an initiative of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights at WSU Law



In the years since the City of Detroit exited emergency management and bankruptcy, popular narratives have hailed the city’s resurrection while marginalizing the experiences, voices, and struggles of long-time residents. Understanding the ongoing crises of water shutoffs, displacement, and school closures as consequences of structural racism, emergency management, and austerity politics in Detroit, local people and community leaders have been at the forefront of dynamic grassroots campaigns to resist unjust policies, uproot the systemic causes of these issues, and put forth alternative visions for the future of the city. This talk will explore the often marginalized histories of community-led struggles for human rights, self-determination, and racial equity in Detroit over the past 20 years through the lenses of African American Studies and Critical Race Theory. Centering the voices of Detroit’s grassroots organizers, the presentation will: 1) analyze the ways organizers are utilizing counternarratives in their work to resist structural racism and build movements for racial equity, human rights, and self-determination; 2) workshop the Detroit Equity Action Lab’s Voices from the Grassroots project, a community-driven oral history project to document, amplify, and support the work of grassroots organizers in the city.


These talks are free and open to the public! We also provide free coffee, tea and cake!


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