The Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation presents the Black Voices Speaker Series


Photo credit/ Courtesy of Marywood University's Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation

All presentations in this series will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Zoom.

Briana Ryan, Editor-in-Chief

This semester the Center for Truth, Racial Healing and Transformation (TRHT) will host a speaker series focused on amplifying Black voices.

Director of Equity and Inclusion Dr. Yerodin Lucas explained that the Black Voices Speaker Series came about from discussions among Marywood’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

To choose who would speak at this series, Lucas explained that the committee looked at its connections.

“We thought about people and scholars that we know in our own disciplines and people that we’ve come into contact with,” said Lucas. “We all have connections within our disciplines so we reached out to our networks and chose some really good folks based on recommendations and people that we actually knew.”

All presentations in this series will take place at 5:30 p.m. on Zoom. This series will feature the following speakers:

  • Poet and Artist Alan Pelaez Lopez will deliver his presentation titled “Arts as Civil Disobedience: Blackness, Migration and Criminality” on March 18.
  • Professor of Criminal Justice at Pennsylvania State University’s Harrisburg campus Dr. Shaun Gabbidon will deliver his presentation titled “Shopping While Black: Consumer Racial Profiling in America” on April 1.
  • Director of Africana Studies at Delaware State University Dr. Donna Patterson will deliver her presentation titled “Gender, Healing, and Africa” on April 18.
  • Associate Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, and African Studies at Pennsylvania State University’s University Park campus Dr. Maha Marouan will deliver her presentation titled “Women and Africana Religions in Cuba” on April 29.

Those interested in attending the series must register at Lucas explained that this series is receiving a warm reception from the community.

“We have quite a few people that have actually registered for all four of the speakers that are going to be coming,” said Lucas. “I’ve also gotten emails from different faculty and students saying how great it is that this series is happening.”

For those interested in attending the series, Director of Student Equity and Inclusion Dr. Lia Richards-Palmiter suggests asking questions and coming with an open mind.

“This series is a great opportunity for people to really think about what their perspective is on diversity,” said Richards-Palmiter. “People may leave this series thinking how the experiences shared [at this series] impacts their idea of diversity.”

Richards-Palmiter explained that there are many ways that people can amplify Black voices beyond attending the series.

“One way people can raise diverse voices is by becoming more knowledgeable about the issues facing different sorts of communities,” said Richards-Palmiter. “Being aware of these different issues can [make] people who may have never faced these issues empathize more with the people who have.”

Lucas said that he hopes people walk away from this series with a deeper understanding that not all narratives are the same in the Black community.

“I hope it helps our students as well as our faculty and our staff to really understand some of the perspectives of Black scholars and what goes on in the Black community,” said Lucas. “The experiences of the Black community are not the same across the board. For example, the Black experience in Brazil might look different than the Black experience in the U.S.”

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Twitter: @BrianaRyanTWW