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Statement on Racial Justice and Equity

The faculty in Emory University’s Department of Film and Media stands with Black Lives Matter and other movements for racial justice and equity around the globe.

Over the course of their history, film and media have been complicit in, and sometimes foundational to, the creation and perpetuation of racialized stereotypes and damaging depictions of Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), specifically Black people. We seek to make our students aware of those difficult histories and the ways that film and media industries have been involved in the practice of white supremacy.

At the same time, film and media have been used by BIPOC to resist and subvert those images, as well as to express the fullness, complexities, and joys of their lives and communities. Our own creative production faculty have created films, television series, blog posts, photographs, and other works of art that have challenged negative stereotypes and aided in deeper understanding of the world around us. Our scholars have sought to expose the ways that race, gender, and other aspects of identity have impacted the history, understanding, and theory of media in American and global cultures.

We recognize that our department has participated in institutionalized forms of anti-Blackness that we are determined to analyze and remove so that we fully align with and support the principles of racial equity and social justice in our field, at Emory and in the world.

For a start, we commit ourselves to teaching media and scholarship produced by a more diverse set of voices and to innovating our classrooms to welcome all students, while being attentive to the inequities that some students face because of structural racism. We also commit to producing creative work and scholarship that acknowledges, illuminates, and works to dismantle structural racism and other forms of bias in the pursuit of a more just society.