Justice: 2020-21 Event Series

Sarah Lawrence College JusticeSarah Lawrence College, today and throughout its history, is a convening place to discuss ideas, research, and current events. The College is a marketplace—a cultural hub—for knowledge, traded through discourse and dialogue and rooted in the pursuit of our motto, “wisdom with understanding.” In this spirit, and in advancing what has always been the core of a Sarah Lawrence education, this academic year’s theme is Justice.

The Justice series will focus our attention on the inequities made starkly apparent by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the protests against racism and police brutality that have been unfolding in our country and across the world. As Martin Luther King, Jr. trenchantly stated: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” (Letter from a Birmingham Jail, 1963). Alongside racial justice, we plan to consider aspects of justice that include environmental justice, economic justice, philosophical and moral underpinnings of the concept of justice, justice in US jurisprudence, and restorative justice, to name only a few.

Upcoming Event

In Conversation: Dr. Michael Eric Dyson and President Cristle Collins Judd

Wednesday, October 21
6:30-8 p.m.
Online via Zoom

Join President Cristle Collins Judd for a conversation with Dr. Michael Eric Dyson, author, sociology professor, New York Times contributing opinion writer, and contributing editor of The New Republic and of ESPN's The Undefeated website. Dr. Dyson’s 2017 book, The Tears We Cannot Stop, has been lauded by the The New York Times Book Review as "one of the most frank and searing discussions on race ... a deeply serious, urgent book…" As the country grapples with racist division at a level not seen since the 1960s, Dr. Dyson’s voice soars above the rest with conviction and compassion. In his 2016 New York Times op-ed piece "Death in Black and White," and in The Tears We Cannot Stop, Dr. Dyson makes a provocative and deeply personal call for change. He argues that if we are to make real racial progress we must face difficult truths, including being honest about how black grievance has been ignored, dismissed, or discounted.


Recent Events

SLC Reads Behold the Dreamers with Author Imbolo Mbue

On September 16, writing faculty member Carolyn Ferrell '84 moderated a discussion with Imbolo Mbue, author of Behold the Dreamers, winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, the Blue Metropolis Words to Change Award, and an Oprah's Book Club selection. A novel about marriage, immigration, class, race, and the trapdoors in the American Dream, Behold the Dreamers tells the story of a young Cameroonian couple making a new life in New York just as the Great Recession upends the economy. Named a Notable Book of the Year by The New York Times and The Washington Post and a Best Book of the Year by close to a dozen publications, the novel has been adapted into an opera in Poland, a stage play in Seattle, and was recently optioned for a movie.

This event kicked off the 2020-21 Justice series, and was the culminating event in our inaugural SLC Reads program, which aimed to introduce students to SLC’s academic environment and faculty community, foster an exchange of ideas, and encourage our community to explore perspectives on themes related to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging.