Gender and Diversity Studies

Contextualizing Xavier's Historic Relationship to Racism

A Virtual Discussion Series on Truth, Racial Healing and Reconciliation

How does understanding the past help us recognize racism and act against it?
Events discussed in this series did not involve the university directly, but they were part of the context in which students and Jesuit leaders made choices about race and enslavement.
We share with earlier generations the fact that we make decisions, large and small, about how we respond to the systemic racism around us. Sometimes even the choices are invisible to us; these presentations seek to help us make them visible.


Featured Speakers:

Tuesday, Feb. 16, 7:00 pm: Clint Bruce, Université Sainte-Anne’s Canadian Research Chair in Acadian and Transnational Studies, explores the killing of Acadian sugar planter Constant Melançon by Toussaint, an enslaved man, in 1858. Constant Melançon and his four brothers attended St. Xavier College a decade earlier.
Click here to REGISTER for this presentation

Wednesday, March 3, 7:00 pm:  W. Caleb McDaniel, author of Pulitzer-Prize winning history, Sweet Taste of Liberty: A True Story of Slavery and Restitution in America, which recounts the experiences of Henrietta Wood, an emancipated slave living in Cincinnati when she was kidnapped and re-enslaved. After the Civil War, she returned to Cincinnati and successfully sued for reparations.
Click here to REGISTER for this presentation

Nikki Taylor, chair of History Department, Howard University is the author of Driven toward Madness: The Fugitive Slave Margaret Garner and Tragedy on the Ohio. Garner’s desperate decision to kill her daughter rather than see her return to enslavement occurred blocks from St. Xavier College.


Discussion of Presentations by Kelly Schmidt, Xavier alumna, PhD candidate at Loyola University Chicago, and research coordinator of the Jesuits, Slavery, History, Memory and Reconciliation Project and Xavier faculty members.