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Statement on Anti-Racism

It is with heavy hearts that the members of the Department of Sociology, at the University of Calgary, reach out to the Black, Indigenous and People of Color in our campus community and beyond. We are horrified that George Floyd lost his life at the hands of the police and recognize this as a sign and symptom of pervasive, systemic, anti-black racism, in both the USA and Canada. We mourn the loss of Black, Brown, and Indigenous lives to racial terrorism and racial injustices, including police brutality. Black lives matter and we stand steadfast in the fight to resist racial injustices and to share the vision of a just world.

The Sociology Department is also home to the Law and Society Program and the University of Calgary Chair in Ethnic Studies. As sociological and sociolegal scholars, our work is informed by critical analyses of social stratifiers including racialization and racism. We are committed to continuing the work of dismantling white supremacy both within and outside of the academy. We endorse the statement recently released by the Canadian Sociological Association and the statement by the American Sociological Association. In our teaching, our research, our activism and our outreach, we will redouble our efforts to address the issues of racial injustice that plague our communities. 

In terms of teaching, we will be offering the following courses this Fall, all of which deal critically with issues of social inequality:

-SOCI 307 – Sociology of Indigenous People in Canada

-SOCI 325 – Intro Deviance and Social Control

-SOCI 365 – Social Stratification

-SOCI 375 – Sociology of Ethnicity and Racialization

-SOCI 421.01 – Topics in Deviance and Criminology: Aboriginals and the Criminal Justice System

-LWSO 335 – Equality Issues   

Our department also commits to take concrete actions over the coming weeks and months, including discussing ways in which we can increase anti-racist, intersectional and Indigenous content, not just in the above courses, but in all of our courses. As a department, we will also continue the work we have begun of Indigenizing and decolonizing our research and pedagogy. To these ends, this year’s Fall retreat for faculty will be built around discussions of anti-racism, anti-white supremacy, intersectionality, Indigenization and decolonization.

Thanks to Dr. Pallavi Banerjee for providing the following resources to help guide us as we grapple with these issues:

The ...1 titles, a mix of history, social science, and memoir, offer facts and reflections on systemic racial injustice as well as ways to channel feeling into action.

A Project by the Augusta Baker Chair | Dr. Nicole A. Cooke | The University of South Carolina | @BakerChair

"The Charlottesville Syllabus is a resource created by the Graduate Student Coalition for Liberation to be used to educate readers about the long history of white supremacy in Charlottesville, Virginia. With resources selected and summaries written by UVa graduate students, this abridged version of the Syllabus is organized into six sections that offer contemporary and archival primary and secondary sources (articles, books, responses, a documentary, databases) and a list of important terms for discussing white supremacy. Only “additional resources” are not available online (but can be found either through JSTOR, at the library, or for purchase)."

"These resources, inspired by the #Charlestonsyllabus, are for anybody who wants to learn more from perspectives often underrepresented among many White circles." -- Jon Greenberg, Citizenship and Social Justice

"Institutional racism—a term coined by Stokely Carmichael (later known as Kwame Ture) and Charles V. Hamilton in their 1967 book Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America—is what connects George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery with Philando Castile, Eric Garner, Emmett Till, and the thousands of other people of color who have been killed because they were black in America. This context seems vital for discussions both inside and outside the classroom. The following articles, published over the course of JSTOR Daily’s five years try to provide such context."

Includes information and links about film & TV, books, websites, podcasts, articles and organizations 

We are here for, and stand in solidarity with, all who are impacted by racism and racial injustice, and all who fight for equity and justice.