NYU Professor Posts Free ‘Black Lives Matter’ Syllabus

People take part in a rally on April 29, 2015 at Union Square in New York, held in solidarity with demonstrators in Baltimore, Maryland demanding justice for an African-American man who died of severe spinal injuries sustained in police custody. AFP PHOTO/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez (Photo credit should read EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)
People take part in a rally on April 29, 2015 at Union Square in New York, held in solidarity with demonstrators in Baltimore, Maryland demanding justice for an African-American man who died of severe spinal injuries sustained in police custody. AFP PHOTO/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez (Photo credit should read EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ/AFP/Getty Images)

If you’ve been wanting to learn more about racial problems in the United States, but are feeling lost about how to start, you’re in luck. Frank Leon Roberts, a New York University faculty member and deeply involved Black Lives Matter activist, has made the syllabus for his course “Black Lives Matter” available online for free.

Roberts’ course is designed to place the Black Lives Matter movement in context. He achieves this by situating it alongside topics like the U.S. prison system, the media, the Obama presidency, and the history of black movements.

Roberts writes of his course: “#blacklivesmatter has emerged in recent years as a movement committed to resisting, unveiling, and undoing histories of state-sanctioned violence against black and brown bodies.”

Required texts for the course include Black Lives Matter movement policies and essays by scholars and activists like Cornel West and Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw. The course will also feature films like Birth of a Nation—the 2016 film about Nat Turner’s Slave Rebellion that shares a title with a 1915 D.W. Griffith film, famous for both technical innovations and its racist portrayal of African Americans.

 For more information, visit www.blacklivesmattersyllabus.com

By Maggie Anderson

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