Award Presentation and Lecture and Residency Schedule
“Crops With No Plow: Racial Literacy as Antidote – Not Cure – to Racial Threat”
How to engage, not avoid, racial encounters
Howard C. Stevenson is the Constance Clayton Professor of Urban Education at the University of Pennsylvania’s Graduate School of Education. He is a nationally recognized clinical psychologist and researcher of racial stress and trauma.
While racial equity in this country has grown, it has also regressed. Racial hate has risen in the last decade, and current American political battles involve the institutionalization of this hate in education, justice, and health policies. Frederick Douglass once spoke of a previous racially contentious cadre of leaders when he remarked, “Those who profess to favor freedom yet depreciate agitation are men who want crops without plowing up the ground…”
Avoiding racial interactions, rather than actively engaging them, results in staggering costs to the national economy and to the emotional and physical health of Black and Brown families. We continue to fail to change racial outcomes in proximal spaces of healing, earning, affirming, and learning. This talk will focus on how individuals and institutions can use racial literacy approaches to reduce the threat of face-to-face racial encounters in family, work, school, and neighborhood relationships and improve the health and wealth outcomes for everyone.
Dr. Stevenson will be in residence at Brandeis from November 17 to 19.
The Gittler Prize is hosted by the International Center for Ethics, Justice and Public Life on behalf of the Office of the President and Office of the Provost. Dr. Stevenson's residency is cosponsored by the Education Program at Brandeis.