Humanities Center Issues Response to George Floyd's Death

Humanities Center Issues Response to George Floyd's Death

The appalling killing of George Floyd has once again brought to light America’s history of racial injustice and the continued and pervasive violence suffered by Black communities. All of us at USD’s Humanities Center abhor and denounce this all-too-frequent brutality, just as we abhor and denounce the suppression of protest and the use of the dehumanizing words “scum” and “lowlife” to describe those thirsting for a better world. We long for civic and political life to be animated by kindness, decency and fellow-feeling, and for an end to division and racist violence. 

It was our honor, just last year, to exhibit the work of the artist Ja’Tovia Gary in the Humanities Center Gallery. Her powerful and heartrending film, Giverny I: Négresse Impériale, juxtaposed idyllic scenes in Monet’s garden at Giverny with video footage of the shooting of Philando Castile during a traffic stop In Falcon Heights, Minnesota, in 2016. It should appall and outrage us all that yet another name must be added to the list of brutally taken lives. Philando Castile. Eric Garner. Michael Brown. Tamir Rice. Sandra Bland. Breonna Taylor. Ahmaud Arbery. George Floyd. On and on and on, it seems.

These wrongs must spur us to address in whatever way we can the injustices that have for too long been inflicted upon communities of color.  In this spirit, the Humanities Center will offer to all incoming USD students this fall a specially-developed class on race and racial injustice. And we will continue to celebrate and to learn from the work of brilliant writers and artists of color. 

The Humanities Center was designed to explore the human condition and the limitless ways in which human beings understand and interact with our world. In days like this it must be stated emphatically that Black perspectives on the human condition matter. Black voices matter. Black lives matter.

begin quoteThese wrongs must spur us to address in whatever way we can the injustices that have for too long been inflicted upon communities of color.
Black box with white text stating  Black perspectives on the human condition matter. Black voices matter. Black lives matter.

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