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The Coming Enlightenment: The University Sector and Reparatory Justice for Slavery and Colonialism

Friday, September 16, 2022 at 4:30pm to 6:00pm


Postcolonial discourse has called into question the historic Western Enlightenment by demonstrating its links to violent colonialism, chattel slavery, Indigenous genocide, and persistent institutional and cultural racism.

Sir Hilary Beckles suggests that the growing global reparatory justice movementparticularly as it emanates from the higher education sectormay present the best potential for an authentic 21st-century Enlightenment. Universities are now deeply researching their role, functions, and legacies within the Atlantic slave complex and exploring where these discursive discoveries, as crimes against humanity, will leadback into the future or forward against the past.

Join the lecture live in the Rhodes-Rawlings Auditorium in Klarman Hall! In-person attendees have the chance to enchange ideas with Beckles during a Q&A session following the lecture. Or join the lecture virtually by registering at eCornell.

About the Speaker

Sir Hilary Beckles, eighth vice chancellor of the University of the West Indies, is a distinguished academic, international thought leader, United Nations committee official, and global public activist in the field of social justice and minority empowerment.

He received his higher education in the United Kingdom and is professor of economic history. He has lectured extensively in Europe, the Americas, Africa, and Asia. He has published over 100 peer reviewed essays in scholarly journals and over 13 books on subjects ranging from Atlantic and Caribbean History, to gender relations in the Caribbean, sport development, and popular culture.

Beckles is president of Universities Caribbean, chair of the Caribbean Examinations Council, chair of the CARICOM Reparations Commission, and advisor on sustainable development to former United Nations secretary-general Ban Ki-moon. He was knighted by the government of Barbados. He has received numerous honorary doctorates from around the world and recently received the Martin Luther King Jr. Peace and Freedom Award.

Hosts and Sponsors

Beckles' lecture and campus visit are part of the Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies' Distinguished Speaker series and ongoing work on Inequalities, Identities, and Justice. The lecture is the closing event in the 60th anniversary Public Issues Forum series of the Einaudi Center's Latin American and Caribbean Studies Program.

The event is funded in part by the A.D. White Professor-At-Large Program, the Migrations initiative, and a LACS Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

Dial-In Information

Register through eCornell:

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