BU Today: Prof. Copeland Shares What “Black Resistance” Means to Him
In honor of Black History Month, BU Today asked members of the BU community to reflect on the theme of “Black Resistance” and what it means to them. Phillipe Copeland, a clinical associate professor at BU School of Social Work and assistant director of narrative at the BU Center for Antiracist Research, shares his take on why it’s crucial to resist racist, authoritarian reactions against the Black community as subjects like Critical Race Theory and AP African American Studies are removed from schools.
Excerpted from “What ‘Black Resistance’ Means to Me” (BU Today, 2/16/23) by Cydney Scott and Jackie Ricciardi:
We are living and dying through a period of racist backlash intended to maintain the status of wealthy whites. An international white nationalist movement, racial terrorism, hate crimes, police and vigilante violence, and racist policymaking are just a few examples. Such authoritarian trends put democracy and freedom at risk across the globe. The stakes are high and the hour is late. We are literally in the fight of our lives …
“The conspiracy of forgetting must be exposed, resisted, and defeated. If democracy and freedom are to exist in practice and not just on paper, we must ‘keep fresh a memory of the past till justice be done in the present.’ We must dare to remember.”