January 26, 2021

Black Cultural Center releases spring 2021 virtual events

Note to journalists: Journalists visiting campus should follow visitor health guidelines.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Purdue University’s Black Cultural Center is releasing the upcoming schedule of virtual events.

All events are free. Registration is required for all events and can be done via the BCC’s website.

* Now-Feb. 28 — “The Rudiments of SuPre” by Boyd Smith at the Art Museum of Greater Lafayette, 102 S. 10th St., Lafayette. In 1995, a criminologist named John Dilulio falsely predicted that there would be an explosion of violence caused by young Black men, whom he termed “super predators.” This myth created a baseless fear that heightened government surveillance programs, intensified policing, and fueled mass incarceration of the Black community. Boyd Smith earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Electronic and Time-based Art from Purdue. This exhibition is his thesis project, a series that highlights the unjust racial violence in America and provides a visual space to claim justice for the Black community. “​The Rudiments of SuPre”​ is a collection that reflects on how the idea of super predator shapes the violent realities experienced by Black people in our contemporary moment. Smith explores mixed media practices in order to highlight the complexities of this lived experience and works to provide a counter visual that re-sensitizes the audience to Black bodies and Black life. The creation of “SuPre,” a fictional character in Smith’s work, helps to challenge the demonization of Black boys as super predators and instead allows them to see themselves as protectors of their communities.

* Feb. 1 and 15, March 1 and 15, April 5 and 19 — Kiswahili Basics. Noon to 1 p.m. This program will introduce the language, teach basic conversational skills, and share broader information about the history, culture and heritage of East Africa. Participants will master the alphabet, basic greetings, basic numbering, and simple icebreaker conversations, but the focus will be on a broadening experience rather than a deep dive into the language itself.

* Feb. 4 and 11 — Book clubs with West Lafayette Public Library. 7 p.m. The BCC and the West Lafayette Public Library will present a virtual community reading group for both youth and adults. The series will feature titles from 2020 Advancing Racial Equities Indiana Humanities Grant. Books selected are intended to be uplifting and relevant to the Black community. The adult selection is “No Ashes in the Fire: Coming of Age Black and Free in America​” by Darnell L. Moore. The teen book club selection is “How Long ’Til Black Future Month?​” by N.K. Jemisin, which will be discussed on Feb. 16 and 23.

* Feb. 8 — Sol Glo. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Live day party that highlights what’s making one’s soul glow. A day of celebration, liberation and joy.

* Feb. 10 —Kimberlé W. Crenshaw as part of the Pursuing Racial Justice Together series. 7 p.m. Crenshaw is a pioneering scholar and writer on civil rights, critical race theory, Black feminist legal theory, and race, racism and the law. In addition to her position at Columbia Law School, she is a distinguished professor of law at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is the co-author of “Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out, Overpoliced, and Underprotected.” She assisted on the legal team of Anita Hill during her testimony at the confirmation hearing of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. This event is co-sponsored by Krannert School of Management’s Brock-Wilson Center for Women in Management at Purdue.

* Feb. 12 — “Black Music and Liberation” hosted by James Dekle. 7 p.m. This event will feature the “Everybody vs. Racism” podcast, an artistic project by hip-hop artist Lamingo Tomlin. Tomlin and his business partner Andrew Hampton will provide an all-access interview to the making of the “Everybody vs. Racism” project.

* Feb. 17 — “Decolonizing Language: The Value of Learning Mother Tongue and Indigenous Languages.” Noon to 1 p.m. As the English language takes center stage as the global language for business, innovation, science and academia, indigenous languages rich in ancient wisdom, culture and history often are relegated to the background. Language is not made up of mere words only. It is cultural beliefs, traditions, ways of being, thinking, indigenous wisdom, ideological beliefs and nuances. This program will draw the participants into an awareness that the English language is colonized. Mother tongues are going extinct and the world is losing the words, wisdom, cultural context and meaning.

* Feb. 22 — “Drum Roll” with Clint Breeze. 1-2:30 p.m. Through this interactive workshop, world-class percussionist Clint Breeze explores the timeline of percussion, ranging from pencil beats on lunch tables through some advanced rhythms on the djembe and drum kit.

* Feb. 24 — Black History Month Coffee House, “Intimate Artistic Expressions.” 7 p.m. BCC ensembles will present powerful music, empowering poetic messages, creative dance and drama.

* March 4 — “White Fragility” with Robin DiAngelo. 7 p.m. DiAngelo, an affiliate associate professor of education at the University of Washington in Seattle, coined the term ​“white fragility” in 2011​ in an academic article that influenced the international dialogue on race. Her book, ​“White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism,”​ was released in June 2018 and debuted on the New York Times Bestseller List, where it remained for two years. It is being translated into 10 languages. This event is co-sponsored with Purdue’s Honors College.

* March 9 — “Mental Health Care and the Black Community” presented by Meredith Stravers. 7 p.m. Stravers, co-founder of The Truth & Titus Collective, will lead a discussion on mental health issues in the Black community including race-related stress and mental trauma, healing, and navigating mental health care spaces in the mainstream, Afrocentric interventions and more. This event will feature a question-and-answer session with Maime Butler, doctoral candidate in counseling psychology, staff therapist at Purdue’s Counseling and Psychological Services, and Black student liaison; David Rollock, professor of psychological sciences; and Stravers.

* March 15-17 — Virtual Gullah/Geechee history and traditions tour. 7 p.m. During the spring, the Black Cultural Center will conduct a virtual Gullah/Geechee tour. Participants will explore the history and culture found in this distinctly African culture.

* March 16 and 19 — Spring break book club for pre-teens. 7 p.m. The group will review “New Kid”​ by Jerry Craft.

* March 25-26 — “Next Steps – Environmental Justice, Climate Change and Racial Justice.” This free symposium will make visible environmental justice work and create a regional action network by bringing together Purdue’s researchers, artists, scholars and stakeholders, including peers working at research institutions across the state. This event is co-organized with the Center for the Environment and the Climate Change Research Center.

* March 31 — “All About Love.” Noon to 1 p.m. In this contemplative conversation with poet Manon Voice, the group will review the bestselling book “All About Love.” The group also will learn how to center a love ethic.

* April 24 — Cultural Arts Festival. 7 p.m. The festival will be a virtual performance experience featuring the BCC ensembles.

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked the No. 5 Most Innovative University in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://purdue.edu/.

Writer, Media contact: Matthew Oates, 765-586-7496 (cell), oatesw@purdue.edu, @mo_oates

Source: Renee Thomas, rathomas@purdue.edu, @purdue_bcc 

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