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Town Hall #4: What Comes After the Public Commitments?

On June 17 at 12 pm EDT, ArtsEmerson hosted a Town Hall with Executive Director David C. Howse and Artistic Director David Dower for a conversation centered around the most recent displays of racist acts in the U.S. and the subsequent “organizational commitment” statements to Black Lives Matters and dismantling white supremacy that we’ve seen all across the world from various institutions.

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Organizations Have Stated Their Commitments. Now What? By David C. Howse

In response to the most recent displays of racist acts in this country, my inbox has been flooded with “organizational commitment” statements; commitments to anti-racist practices, commitments to Black Live Matters, commitments to share resources and commitments to be better white institutions, better white people. And I hear you. The words are appreciated but your action is needed.

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Don’t Take Our Word For It By David Dower

Like so many cultural institutions around the country, we’ve published statements on the deaths of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor on our home page, shared them on our social media platforms and we’ve pushed them out through email. What’s next?

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Resist Numbness By David C. Howse

George Floyd was basically my age, and his murder has affected me deeply. Personally speaking, and perhaps like you, I am outraged. The deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, the racist act in New York’s Central Park and now the murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis – it’s all disgusting and overwhelming; and though I have no words, it is all I want to talk about.

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How a Statement Comes Together

Over the years, ArtsEmerson has made a series of statements from our stages, on our marquees, and in the press that express our dedication to addressing the systemic white supremacy that oppresses all Bostonians. And yet, the process of finding these words in moments of confusion, anger, and sadness never gets easier.

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