Dear Friends and Colleagues –

Welcome back to campus! We hope your semester is off to a good start. Many of you have been part of conversations, formal and informal, out of which the Race & Racism at the University of Richmond Project has taken shape. Without your vision and energy, this project would not be possible. And so, we, the Project’s Advisory Group, would like to take this opportunity to share with you some exciting developments and inform you of a couple of things coming up in the near future.

Joining us…

Irina Rogova, a recent MLIS graduate from Simmons College, joins us as Project Archivist. Bringing to UR a deep commitment to racial justice, Irina was chair of the Progressive Librarians Guild student chapter at Simmons, orienting her work around issues of diversity and inclusion. Her experience with archives at several cultural heritage institutions points to her commitment to giving voice to marginalized populations through archives and archival practice. We are thrilled to have her with us!

One of the founding student members of the Race and Racism at UR Project, Victoria Charles recently graduated from UR with a double major in American Studies and Political Science. Victoria joins us as an inaugural Humanities Post-Baccalaureate fellow, continuing research begun on black students at UR during the 1960s and 1970s. We are so glad she is continuing to work with us!

We have a (growing) digital collection!

As of December 2015, we have a site, which houses documents uncovered to build a digital archive. The site started with a joint-American Studies/Rhetoric & Communication Studies seminar, Digital Memory & the Archive, 15 students, and much collaboration across campus. The second iteration of Digital Memory & the Archive is currently under way. An open public forum at the end of the semester to share this semester’s student research will be announced once details are finalized. In the meantime, please feel free to navigate the site.

This is, of course, just a beginning. If you have any feedback, suggestions for the site, and/or documents/contacts to share, please be in touch. We want to hear from you!

Looking Ahead

There is much to do as the Project launches, but in the meantime we would like to give you some additional information on a couple of events coming up soon…

  • Welcome Reception. Learn more about the Project, meet Irina and Victoria, and connect with the community. Friday, September 9, from 4-5:30 PM on the patio outside Boatwright Memorial Library. Rain location: inside.
  • Lemonade Syllabus Exhibit. Stop by and view the #LemonadeSyllabus exhibit on the 2nd floor of Boatwright. Created in response to the April 23, 2016 release of Beyonce’s 6th solo album, the #LemonadeSyllabus was crafted by primarily black women to further investigate and appreciate the black feminist and womanist themes throughout the artist’s visual album and the ongoing struggle for black liberation encapsulated in recent years by the #BlackLivesMatter movement. Bringing together over 200 resources ranging from fiction to film to self-care guides, the Lemonade Syllabus is an ongoing project in centering and elevating the voices and experiences of black women in the United States and around the world. Created by Irina Rogova, the Exhibit gives visitors the opportunity to check out resources from the syllabus, contributing to an ongoing conversation and ever-evolving exhibit!

We hope to see you on September 9 and look forward to our continued work together.


The Race & Racism Project Advisory Group