While the objective of the Brandeis BLK Archives online portal is to create a platform which represents the University’s rich history of black, student of color, and marginalized peoples activism; it is our intention to do so in a way that recognizes the nuances, complexities, and layers missed by typical monolithic representation. It is our goal to curate unique exhibits from various collections which explore the complexities of black identities, histories of allyship among cultural clubs and organizations, and intra-Black communal struggles.
We want to be clear: we know that it is common place for projects surrounding questions of identity to be misinterpreted as projects engaging and celebrating diversity. That, however, is not this platform’s intent. Inspired by the campus student movements of Ford Hall ’69 and its ’15 successor, this platform aims to curate a holistic, interactive, storytelling exhibit which displays the University’s history of student liberation movements – specifically black and of color ones.
As we aim to be deliberate with how we amass, aggregate, and display these exhibits, we have decided to release material in stages. By treating this project as a living, breathing platform we are able to:
- focus our energies on curating comprehensive, culturally sensitive exhibits;
- begin engaging the community of stakeholders with material;
- receive feedback for integration in the upcoming exhibits
Rather than remaining in development and out of public use for prolonged periods, it is our hope that we can create a platform responsive and responsible to the people whom it records. Within the digital exhibits we wish to promote and provide the widest possible accessibility of materials. We recognize that access to records is essential in personal, academic, business, social movement settings, and aim to be deliberate with our outreach efforts to ensure all have a seat at the table.
Will Jones ’18
Marian Gardner ’18