Building Bridges/Dismantling Racism for the Common Good

deadline for submissions: 
January 30, 2021
full name / name of organization: 
Tonnia L. Anderson/University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma and Mark Schmitt/TU Dortmund University
contact email: 

International Workshop & Conference (Virtual) 

Building Bridges/Dismantling Racism for the Common Good is scheduled for June 9-11, 2021. The workshop-conference will examine the characteristics of systemic racism and its impact on everyday life by exploring the interrelated themes of diversity, alienation (anomie), whiteness, and community.  Presentations developed around these themes will establish critical frameworks for understanding how race and racial ideologies persist in shaping social and cultural institutions, which mediate interconnectedness and/or social isolation between individuals and social groups, and how these factors foster or hinder community-building.  Towards this end,   perceptions of identity and community will be examined by (i) presenting concepts and theories that are core to cultural diversity including the basis of stereotypes, prejudice, stigma, discrimination, and privilege, (ii) investigating the links between practices of exclusion and the structuring of societies, and (iii) exploring the psychosocial factors that contribute to alienation (anomie) and social isolation.  The workshop design is based on the organizers’ conviction that addressing racism necessitates a rigorous interdisciplinary approach and also needs to bridge the gap between academic research and teaching and social activism beyond the university. 

 In addition to the information-driven component featured through the presentations of scholars and community activists, workshops (or break-out sessions) will be facilitated each day by the staff of the Institute for the Healing of Memories (IMH) to help participants process their feelings, experiences, and general understanding of the topics presented.  The goals of these workshops with IHM facilitators are the following:  1) begin the process of building bridges (across ethnic, social, national, age or gender barriers) through fostering authentic dialog with and between participants; 2) learn strategic methods of uncovering how racial ideologies shape identity for personal transformation; 3) provide a space to begin the process of healing. 

 Goals for Building Bridges/Dismantling Racism

We seek to dismantle the unintentional walls that can exist between scholars, community activists, and the general public that inhibit the flow of information between these sectors.  In so doing, our goal is to create a learning environment of authentic exchange—a sort of teach-in—for all participants.


Possible Topics and Themes

  • Designing Race through Representational Forms
  • Confronting “White Only” Spaces within the 21st Century
  • Economic Impact of Racial Stratification
  • Intersections of Race, Immigration, and Empire
  • Mobilization and Internalization of Racial Stereotypes
  • Neuroscience of Racist Thinking/Othering
  • Anomie
  • Biodiversity and Race
  • Globalization and Race
  • Violence
  • Comparative Histories on Race/Racism
  • Racial Trauma
  • Creative Strategies of Resistance
  • Memory and Race
  • Identity
  • Social Justice Work
  • Whiteness

Proposed Formats*                                            

Individually submitted papers

Roundtable discussions

Pre-recorded lecture/presentations


*Due to COVID-19 all presentations will take place virtually, either live-streamed or pre-recorded.


Publication Opportunity

Accepted papers from Building Bridges/Dismantling Racism will be proposed to a leading independent academic publisher.


If interested in contributing, please send an email confirmation with an abstract of not more than 300 words and a short bio by January 30, 2021 to or .  Full submissions/presentations will be due April 1, 2021.