A conference aimed at “challenging the silence” on race and racism in higher education will be hosted by academics from Goldsmiths, University of London and the London School of Economics on Thursday 13 October.
Rhodes Must Fall, Decolonising the Curriculum, Why is my curriculum white? and Why isn’t my professor black? are all campaigns that have made headlines in recent years.
And reports such as the Runnymede Trust’s ‘Race, Inequality and Diversity in the Academy’ (2015) consistently point to the fact that UK higher education is still failing to confront racism and provide genuinely inclusive teaching and learning environments.
In his forward to the latest Runnymede Trust report, David Lammy MP notes that while “while unprecedented numbers of black and minority people are attending university”, there are still “depressingly few black academics, particularly at senior level”.
Goldsmiths’ Dr Elizabeth Williams, author of 'The Politics of Race in Britain and South Africa' (IB Tauris 2015), has co-organised a one-day symposium with Dr Akile Ahmet, researcher on race, inequality, age and education at LSE.
‘Challenging the Silence in Higher Education: Race and Racism in the Academy’ takes place at Goldsmiths’ New Cross campus during the day, before moving to LSE for an evening reception and opening of a photograph exhibition documenting the experiences of black and ethnic minority PhD students at LSE.
Following hot on the heels of ‘Black Scholars in Critical Dialogue: Confronting Racism in the Academy - Re-Imagining the Disciplines’, held in September at Birkbeck, it shows that black and ethnic minority scholars and others are beginning to question “invisibility” from the higher echelons of HE.
Dr Ahmet and Dr Williams have invited well-known academics, speakers and students to front panels on a variety of themes, exploring the experiences of being black and ethnic minority academics and professionals in higher education.
Students’ Union officers at both Goldsmiths and LSE are also collaborating and will attend the event as part of the Unions’ Black History Month activity.
Book free tickets for the photographic exhibition, with keynote speech by Dr Suki Ali, LSE, via eventbrite
Follow @raceinacademy for updates.
Download the Challenging the Silence in HE programme (PDF)