Dancing Around Race: Whiteness in Higher Education- The University of Utah


Due October 01, 2019

In 2018 Gerald Casel led a community engagement residency in the Bay Area called Dancing Around Race that examined issues surrounding equity in dance. Using a systems thinking approach, Gerald invited choreographers, educators, writers, funders, and curators to discuss issues that contribute to racial inequity. 

In January of 2020, Dancing Around Race will take place at the University of Utah with a special focus on whiteness in higher education. Gerald Casel, Rebecca Chaleff, Tria Blu Wakpa, and Kimani Fowlin will lead discussions that highlight how systemic racism shows up in higher education, and how capitalism, patriarchy, white supremacy, and settler colonialism restrict the possibility of shifting power dynamics. 

Two main issues motivate this immersion: first, challenging and uprooting systemic exclusions that have become embedded in courses, curricula, and pedagogical methods, and second, developing practices that nurture self-care and offer long-term benefits for faculty and students. Dancing around Race: Whiteness in Higher Education aims to generate teaching practices that promote equity, access, and healing. 

We invite interested educators and artists to join us from January 17 to January 19, 2020. Some of our questions include:

  • What obstacles get in the way of racial equity in academic settings?
  • How do we address the imbrications of white supremacy and dance in higher education?
  • How do we support and protect faculty of color?
  • How do we honor dance forms in our curriculum that are not represented within the identities of faculty?
  • How we support faculty who are tasked with teaching a genre of dance while not being included in curricular planning?
  • How do we dismantle the hierarchies embedded in the teaching of histories and theories of dance?
  • What does it look/feel like to have racial equity in dance?
  • What does the future look like? What steps can we take?

If you would like to participate in this immersion, let us know by October 1, 2019. Please send an email to kate.mattingly@utah.edu with your CV, writing sample, and a teaching statement or research statement. Invitations to attend will be sent November 1, 2019. There is no fee to participate. Lodging on campus can be booked at the University Guesthouse, a 20-minute walk to the School of Dance. If you have any questions, please email kate.mattingly@utah.edu.

Dancing Around Race: Whiteness in Higher Education is supported by a Dee Grant and by the Tanner Humanities Center.