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In the Spring of 2015, a group of students at Bard College convened with the purpose of finding a way to creatively engage in, sustain, and shape the dialogue on campus around identity, most especially race. Disappointed with the way conversations around race and racism take place on campus, Race Monologues became a way for Bard students to express their thoughts and experiences on race, ethnicity, and identity within and outside of the Bard experience.
Race Monologues, therefore, is a showcase of student written performances, whether it be poetry, written scenes, collaborative pieces, songs, and multimedia work that takes place at Bard College every semester. The purpose is to establish a creative platform for students to voice themselves, to engage with, and challenge existing conversations around these issues. The latest performance took place in the lobby of the Hessel Museum on campus, the night of December 4th, 2015, during the Fall 2015 semester. The Hessel Museum is a gallery located at Bard’s Center for Curatorial Studies. For seating, chairs were arranged in the space—a rectangular room consisting of large blank white walls. However, attendance was so successful that many students who were not able to sit on a chair filled the aisles. Each performance was praised with a roaring applause from predominately white student audience.
We were fortunate enough to have a photographer and film crew to document the performance. In addition, the performances we recorded. It is a pleasure to have a series of recordings of these performances broadcasted on today’s Human Right Project Radio Show. Because the majority of the performance are live recordings it very possible that some background noise will be heard. However, some of the performances were also re-recorded, accounting for variation in sound form one performance to the next.
In addition to the Race Monologue taking place at Bard College. The student performers were recently invited to re-enact the Fall 2015 performances at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, an early college in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, at 8:30pm on February 27th, 2016. We are very excited to see Race Monologues develop into a tradition that takes roots in multiple campuses within the Bard network.
Introduction by Natalie Desrosiers
Victoria Haschke: Checking Your Boxes 3:35-9:12
Paris Adorno: Not Your Puerto Rican 9:38-12:21
Forrest Ward-Cherry: Suicidal Tendencies of Oppressed Voices 12:37-14:27
Alana Bortoluzzi: Latina Enough 14:40-17:50
Jordana Rubenstein-Edberg and Funto: The N Word 18:15-21:51
Oluwafunto (Funto) Omojola: Black Girl 22:00-25:28
Sky Sealey: They Call That The Angry Black Woman Syndrome 25:57-28:21
Salim Chagui: my white/despite you/I love you, other 28:35-33:00
Christopher (Chris) Long: No Back Seat Driving 33:15-37:23
Natalie Desrosiers: Jericho’s Rose 38:10-46:34
Coriana Johnson: i’m black black rage 46:57-48:47
Winta Mehari: Ajokie ze gualey 48:58-52:01
Antoinette Kane: Unfinished 52:27-56:47
Visit the Race Monologues site here.
View the Race Monologues Fall 2015 caught on video, here.