Rachel L. Swarns is the director of Hidden Legacies: Slavery, Race and the Making of 21st Century America, a new initiative of the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute at New York University. The initiative, which includes a lecture series and research projects, will deepen Americans’ understanding of the connections between slavery and contemporary institutions, and bring journalists, scholars, students and communities together to promote and produce research and reporting that illuminates the experiences of people of color in the United States.
A critical component of the project is the creation of a digital archive, a repository of archival records that will document the role that slavery played in the emergence of key institutions, including universities, religious institutions and financial institution.
“This digital archive will give journalists, scholars, students and community members the tools—the historical records—to report on and to document our contemporary connections to our nation’s history of forced bondage,” Swarns explains.
Hidden Legacies aims to play an important role in informing local and national discussions among policy makers, activists and community members who are working to address the legacies of slavery and racial discrimination in their institutions and communities. Please join us in this critical work.