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Spelman Scholar Strike Sponsored by the Faculty Council

September 8-9, 2020

The Scholar Strike is to raise awareness about racial injustice and police violence and to protest against it.

What does striking mean? It means to strike at, to strike against, or to strike down. To be clear, we are not striking Spelman College, rather we are striking systemic racism and police violence. Decide how much time you will commit to teaching, learning, and raising awareness, on one day or both days (one day, half day, or one hour). The decision about canceling your class(es) is yours to make. Use this strike time to pause the regular duties of your work, and participate in panels, discussions, readings, or films related to the historical roots and continuation of racism and police violence. Direct your students to join you. Use this time to also mark a moment of silence for those harmed and killed by systemic racism and police violence.

We especially invite those that have not historically been involved in these issues to participate—and we are eager to hear what you are thinking. Engagement in Scholar Strike and the action that emerges from this are urgent. We will strike as a way of joining our voices with countless other scholars who insist on social change, who are determined to eradicate systemic racism, and to radically modify the system of criminal justice.

The Spelman Scholar Strike planning committee is providing a schedule (attached below) that includes suggested preparations for Monday, Sept. 7 and two days (Tuesday and Wednesday), Sept. 8-9, of panel discussions from faculty who teach about these issues, an interview with the President of the College, workshops, public talks, and films that will provide history and context, and an organized list of resources that can be used during the time of Scholar Strike and beyond. We encourage faculty to raise awareness about these issues by posting on social media using the hashtags, #ScholarStrike and #SpelmanScholarStrike

To Get Started:

  • Complete the suggested preparations on Monday.
  • Follow the full schedule on Tuesday and Wednesday, as you can. Invite your students to join you. Note: These sessions are only open to Spelman faculty, staff, and students.
  • Remember to use/follow the hashtags: #ScholarStrike #SpelmanScholarStrike and the handle @ScholarStrike
  • Don’t Stop on Wednesday. Say Something! Do Something!

Spelman Scholar Strike Schedule

Spelman Scholar Strike Launch and Preparation

Monday, Sept. 7 

  1. Listen to ScholarStrike organizer (24 min.): Dr. Anthea Butler, about her vision for the protest.
  2. Sign up at Scholar Strike (5 min):
  3. View the film, 13th (1 hour and 40 minutes): In this film, Ava Duvernay examines the U.S. prison system and how the country's history of racial inequality drives the high rate of incarceration in America.
    2. Start a discussion and follow up with reflections on your social media platforms, and tag with #ScholarStrike and #SpelmanScholarStrike

Tuesday, Sept. 8 

10:00 am (1 hour)
Join Virtual Panel Discussion - Racism and the Black Experience
Danielle Dickens, Ph.D., assistant professor of Psychology
Dorian Brown Crosby, Ph.D., assistant professor of Political Science
Angela Farris Watkins, Ph.D., associate professor and Chair of Psychology

11:00 am (1 hour)
Join Virtual Panel Discussion – Police Violence and the Black Experience
Cynthia Neal Spence, Ph.D., associate professor of Sociology
Erica Williams, Ph.D., associate professor and Chair of Sociology and Anthropology
Moderated by Beverly Guy Sheftall, Ph.D., Anna Julia Cooper Professor of Women’s Studies

2:00 pm (1 hour)
Join Virtual Workshop - The Bias Adjuster Workshop
Bentley Gibson, Ph.D., associate professor of Psychology, Georgia Highlands College; CEO and Founder, The Bias Adjuster, LLC

3:00 pm (1 hour)
View the film When They See Us (Part One).
In this film, Ava Duvernay details the true story of five teenagers from Harlem falsely accused of a brutal attack. Part one is made available by Netflix free of charge. Sign up or log in to Netflix for the other parts of this series. 

5:00pm (1 hour)
Join Virtual Discussion – Racism in the Academy and the Success of Spelman College and Other HBCUs
Dr. Mary Schmidt Campbell, president, Spelman College
Moderated by Myra Burnett, Ph.D., vice president, Institutional Research, Planning and Effectiveness

6:30pm (1 hour)
Join Virtual Meditation – A Time of Centering: Meditation and Reflections
Veta Goler, Ph.D. professor of Drama and Dance


Wednesday, Sept. 9 

10:00am (1 hour)
Join Virtual Talk and Activity – Mindfulness Practice and Its Role in Social Change
Natalie Watson-Singleton, Ph.D. assistant professor of Psychology
Moderated by Danielle Dickens, Ph.D. assistant professor of Psychology

11:00 am (2 hours)
Watch Under the Black Light /Say Her Name Series. Telling Stories of State Violence and Public Silence

2:00 pm (1 hour)
Join a Virtual Discussion of Under the Black Light/Say Her Name Series. Telling Stories of State Violence and Public Silence
Moderated by Cynthia Neal Spence, Ph.D., associate professor of Sociology
Beverly Guy Sheftall, Ph.D., Anna Julia Cooper Professor of Women’s Studies

3:00 pm (1 hour)
Read or Watch. Choose something from the Resources list and engage.
Post a reflection about what you are reading or watching on your social media platform(s). Use the hashtags #ScholarStrike and #SpelmanScholarStrike

5:00 pm (1 hour)
Join Virtual Talk – Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum, President Emerita, Spelman College
Presentation hosted by Georgia Tech’s Scheller College of Business
*Registration Required


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