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event • Conferences & Symposia

Universities and Slavery: Bound by History

  • Friday, March 3, 2017
  • Knafel Center
    10 Garden Street
    Cambridge, MA 02138
Speaker at "Universities and Slavery"
Universities and Slavery. Photo by Kevin Grady

In March 2016, Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust, in an opinion piece in the Harvard Crimson, urged the university to more fully acknowledge and understand its links to slavery, stating, “The past never dies or disappears. It continues to shape us in ways we should not try to erase or ignore.”

On March 3, 2017, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University will host a daylong conference to explore the relationship between slavery and universities, across the country and around the world.

The faculty conference organizers are Harvard professors 

  • Sven Beckert, Laird Bell Professor of History
  • Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Victor S. Thomas Professor of History and of African and African American Studies
  • Daniel Carpenter, director of the social sciences program at the Radcliffe Institute and Allie S. Freed Professor of Government

The conference builds on the Harvard and Slavery initiative, founded in 2007, in which students and faculty—led by Beckert—began a detailed examination of Harvard’s range of connections to slavery. 

#unislavery

[ A Conversation on Universities and Slavery President Drew G. Faust and Ta-Nehisi Coates, a national correspondent for The Atlantic, talk at the Radcliffe Institute's conference

Keynote


WELCOME

Lizabeth Cohen, Dean, Radcliffe Institute, and Howard Mumford Jones Professor of American Studies, Harvard University


OPENING REMARKS

Drew Gilpin Faust, President and Lincoln Professor of History, Harvard University


KEYNOTE

Ta-Nehisi Coates, Journalist; National Correspondent, the Atlantic: Author, Between the World and Me (Spiegel & Grau, 2015) and The Beautiful Struggle: A Father, Two Sons, and an Unlikely Road to Manhood (Spiegel & Grau, 2008)


Conversation between Ta-Nehisi Coates and Drew Gilpin Faust

Panel at

Slavery and Universities Nationally


James T. Campbell, Edgar E. Robinson Professor in United States History, Stanford University


Adam Rothman, Professor of History, Georgetown University


Craig Steven Wilder, Barton L. Weller Professor of History, Massachusetts Institute of Technology


Moderator: Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Victor S. Thomas Professor of History and of African and African American Studies, Harvard University

Speaker at

Poetry Reading


Natasha Trethewey RI '01, Former United States Poet Laureate; Robert W. Woodruff Professor of English and Creative Writing, Emory University


Introduced by: Vincent Brown RI '06, Charles Warren Professor of American History and Professor of African and African American Studies, Harvard University

Panel at

Slavery and Harvard


Sven Beckert, Laird Bell Professor of History, Harvard University


Alexandra Rahman ’12, Student Contributor, Harvard and Slavery: Seeking a Forgotten History


Daniel R. Coquillette, J. Donald Monan, S.J. University Professor, Boston College Law School


Julian Bonder, Principal, Wodiczko + Bonder and Julian Bonder + Associates; Professor of Architecture, Roger Williams University


Moderator: Annette Gordon-Reed RI '16, Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History, Harvard Law School, and Professor of History, Harvard University

Panel at

Slavery and Universities Globally


Max Price, Vice-Chancellor, University of Cape Town


Christiane Taubira, Former Minister of Justice (France)


Hilary Beckles, Vice-Chancellor, University of the West Indies


Moderator: Alejandro de la Fuente, Robert Woods Bliss Professor of Latin American History and Economics; Professor of African and African American Studies and of History; Director, Afro-Latin American Research Institute, Harvard University


CONCLUDING REMARKS

Daniel Carpenter, Faculty Director of the Social Sciences Program, Radcliffe Institute; Allie S. Freed Professor of Government, Harvard University

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