Antiracist Manifesto in Communication

The academy is not innocent - it is a colonial project built on lives, bodies, and stolen land. Colonialism’s reliance on the differentiation and categorization of human beings in hierarchical relation and its industrial displacing, looting, maiming, abusing, raping, dismembering, and slaughtering entire peoples and cultures is a drive toward the ongoing development of the empire of white supremacy. As a result, whiteness defines the academy. The communication discipline is no exception. Thus, when we say #CommunicationSoWhite, we are gesturing toward a primary expression of the academy in its ongoing role as an imperial and colonial instrument determined to study populations for the purposes of control and subjugation.

We raise our voices as graduate students who occupy different social locations, but who carry a shared commitment to antiracist pedagogy and research. Fellow graduate students: We are the future of this discipline. We must commit to this work within ourselves and the spaces in which we learn and love. Let us imagine and realize an antiracist communication discipline. We honor and center the antiracist research and pedagogy long created by communication scholars who study power, identity, and marginalization. We join these disciplinary leaders in continuing to de-whiten communication studies. This manifesto is made possible by the creative imaginings of these thinkers, activists, and artists who have shown us that a different discipline is possible.

As graduate students of the communication discipline:

1. We DEMAND communication programs center, affirm, and engage intersectionality--as an analytic, praxis, and ethic hailing from Black feminist traditions--in the pursuit of all communication research and pedagogy. We demand that communication scholars and pedagogues self-reflexively locate themselves in social structures of power and interrogate the ways they and their work are complicit with the status quo of domination.

2. We DEMAND communication programs decenter whiteness at the intersections of difference across all curricula. Doing otherwise appeals to a white supremacist exclusionary tradition which BIPOC scholars and pedagogues have long implicated, further reinforcing a center that has violently marginalized people who do not and did not see themselves in the “legacy” and “history” of this discipline.

3. We DEMAND, as scholars of color have long demanded, that communication scholarship and pedagogy center knowledge produced from the margins. We insist that antiracist pedagogies and research designs inform all undergraduate and graduate communication curricula. These antiracist pedagogies will center difference and refuse tokenization, moving us toward a conscious and intersectional engagement with difference.

4. We DEMAND that communication programs commit to funding, at minimum, two programs per academic year that support antiracist work. These programs should focus on antiracist research, pedagogy, and activism and NOT multicultural diversity initiatives. We reject multicultural diversity initiatives that do not account for power and its violent enactments, including white supremacist terror, and that do not translate to material change. These programs should be decided upon by a collective of graduate students and faculty who are committed to antiracist scholarship and pedagogy. Our call is interventionist, not assimilationist.

5. We DEMAND a FULL STOP to the violent ways that undergraduate, graduate, and junior faculty are “groomed” to “fit” within the field of communication as this works to reinforce and reproduce white supremacy at the intersections of difference; we reject collegiality for its white supremacist roots. We insist on interrogating the ways institutions discipline particularized bodies who deviate from the norm and who reject respectability politics. When the academic pipeline is designed in a way that favors some lives at the expense of others, we must burst the academic pipeline open and flood the dams of academic gatekeeping. #BlackLivesMatter

6. We DEMAND a hiring process that prioritizes scholars and pedagogues steeped in and committed to antiracism across paradigmatic commitments. Antiracism is not relegated to the critical paradigm; antiracism implicates THE WHOLE FIELD: WE DEMAND ANTIRACIST FAMILY COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST COMMUNICATION PHILOSOPHY, ANTIRACIST GROUP COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST PUBLIC SPEAKING, ANTIRACIST PERFORMANCE, ANTIRACIST INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST INSTRUCTIONAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST FORENSICS, ANTIRACIST SPORT COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST INTERPERSONAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST STRATEGIC COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST POLITICAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST BASIC COURSE DESIGN, ANTIRACIST BUSINESS COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST GENDER COMMUNICATION, ANTIRACIST RHETORIC, ANTIRACIST COMMUNICATION.

7. We DEMAND a world in which all communication programs--undergraduate and graduate--confer degrees upon students who are competent in whiteness, race, and racism and who are equipped to intervene in and reject white supremacist aggression. More than that, all communication students should be prepared and empowered to engage in community-centered antiracist praxis. This is the minimum call for our work as COMMUNICATION scholars. We demand interventionist communication. These are not business skills, these are life skills.

8. We DEMAND that all communication research and pedagogy interrogate cultural power in sociohistorical context. Moreover, all communication research and pedagogy should be equipped to distinguish between productive and destructive enactments of power. Indeed, #BlackLivesMatter works in service of increasing Black life while #AllLivesMatter is white supremacist violence.

9. We DEMAND epistemological, ontological, axiological, and praxiological commitments that actively work against and dismantle whiteness, white supremacy, antiblackness, and racism.

10. We EMBRACE the potential for critical love to shape our discipline and seek to extinguish competitive, capitalistic dynamics between scholars and students. It is through this ethic of critical love that we collaborate to write this manifesto. We invite you to join us.

This Manifesto is a beginning; we’re just getting started. If, after reading this Manifesto, you feel implicated and uncomfortable, good. That means you need to interrogate your discomfort and do better. If, after reading this Manifesto, you feel vindicated and heard, join us--students and faculty alike.


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Please use the form below to publicly or anonymously sign in solidarity with the Antiracist Manifesto in Communication. The choice of anonymity is offered to those who find themselves in particularly vulnerable positions, who could attract institutional and interpersonal violence on their bodies should they choose to sign, but are still courageously aligning and sharing with the politic, ethic, and commitment to antiracism in the field of communication. This Google Form does not collect email addresses, and is recommended to be opened in incognito/private window to ensure anonymity. For tutorial: https://balsamiq.com/support/faqs/privatebrowsing/

We invite you to join us in continuing the #CommSoWhite conversation, in voicing out anger, hurt, and frustration, and in imagining an antiracist future in communication.


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Communication Affiliates Committed to Antiracist Communication:

Tyler Rife, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
Ana Terminel Iberri, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Benny LeMaster, Assistant Professor, Arizona State University
Megan Stephenson, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Angela Labador, PhD Student, Arizona State University
B. Liahnna Stanley, PhD student, Arizona State University
Michael Tristano Jr., Assistant Professor, Towson University
Sarah Amira de la Garza, Associate Professor, Arizona State University
Erin Victoria Zamora, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
Lauren Mark, doctoral candidate, Arizona State University
Emilee Shearer, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Ashley Wheeler, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
John Genette, Research Fellow, Arizona State University
Jed Chalupa, GTA, Texas A&M University
Brianna Avalos, PhD Student, Arizona State University
R. Chase Dunn, M.A., Graduate Teaching Associate, Arizona State University
Bernardita M. Yunis Varas, M.A., Ph.D. Student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Dacheng Zhang, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Carlos Flores, Assistant Professor, Sacramento State
Robert J Razzante, Visiting Assistant Professor, The College of Wooster
Marco Dehnert, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Katrina N. Hanna, Assistant Professor, California State University, Long Beach
Daniel C. Brouwer, Associate Professor, Arizona State University
Sarah J. Tracy, Professor, Arizona State University
High School Student
Desirée D. Rowe, Assistant Professor Towson University
Katie Webber, PhD Student, University of Connecticut
Comm Graduate Student of Color
Marshall Covert, Lecturer, Clemson University
Rikki Tremblay
Hana Masri, Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Pennsylvania
Philip Choong, PhD candidate, Indiana University Bloomington
Balencia S. Crosby, Assistant Professor, Lone Star College, University Park
BLM, Former Graduate Student, Midwest
Joshua Hendricks, Graduate Assistant, University of Southern Mississippi
Jenna N. Hanchey, Assistant Professor, University of Nevada, Reno
Elizabeth Encarnacion Assistant Professor of Communication Studies Chaffey College
Anthony Guy, PhD student, Kansas
Tom Hanson, Graduate Student of Color, Midwestern University
Hannah Long, PhD
Edauri Navarro Perez (PhD student, ASU-SoLS)
Hailey Otis, Graduate Teaching Instructor/Doctoral Candidate, Colorado State University
Florencia Durón, Ph.D. Student, Arizona State University
Danielle Zamora, Program Specialist, Active San Gabriel Valley
Andrea Schaaf, PhD Student, Michigan State University
Corey Reutlinger, Doctoral Student, Arizona State University
Sarah Gonzalez Noveiri, PhD Candidate, University of Denver
José Ángel Maldonado, Assistant Professor, University of South Florida
Christine Warda, Chabot College
Oscar Alfonso Mejía, PhD Candidate, University of Utah
Ian Derk, Arizona State University
Dayna N. Kloeber, Doctoral Candidate, Arizona State University
Anna Calloway, Adjunct Faculty, Glendale Community College
Dani R. Soibelman, PhD Student, CU Boulder
Simon Rousset, PhD candidate, University of South Florida
Alex Meller, Community Leader, Scum Haus
Emily N. Beach, M.A.
Sarah De Los Santos Upton, Assistant Professor, The University of Texas at El Paso
Catalina M. de Onís, Asst. Professor, Univ. of Colorado Denver
Monica Hernandez, Graduate Student, ASU
Allison N Blumling, PhD Student, University of Utah
Joshua Ewalt, Assistant Professor, Northern Michigan University
Ana Petero, Communication Studies, Adjunct Professor, Solano Community College
Meggie Mapes, Introductory Course Director, University of Kansas
John Patrick, lecturer, Director of Forensics, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
Julien Sperling, Doctoral Candidate, University of Kansas
Callie Graham, Graduate Teaching Associate, Arizona State University
Kathleen P. Hunt, Assistant Professor SUNY New Paltz
Lindsey Ayotte, Assistant Professor, Skyline College
Alaina Zanin, Assistant Professor, Arizona State University
Brandi Lawless, Associate Professor, University of San Francisco
Reslie Cortés, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
Anonymous
Jasmine Linabary, Assistant Professor, Emporia State University
Cassidy D. Ellis, Doctoral Student, University of New Mexico
Rowdy Duncan Communication Faculty Phoenix College
Kevin Shufford, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
Angélica Amezcua (PhD candidate, SILC, ASU)
Michael F. Walker, Lecturer, Arizona State University
Annelise Ewing Goodman, Ed.D candidate, University of South Dakota
Anya Hommadova Lu, PhD student, ASU
Mx. J. Nyla McNeill, independent scholar, accomplice
Rolando Robles Ramirez - Doctoral Candidate at ASU - Ally
Andrew Spieldenner, Assistant Professor, California State University-San Marcos
David R. Novak Ph.D., Research Manager, Deloitte. Ex-Academic.
Adam Symonds, Director of Forensics, Arizona State University
KC Councilor, Assistant Professor, Southern Connecticut State University
Sophia Corridan, undergraduate student, Northeastern University
Katelyn Brooks, PhD student, Purdue University
Greg Hummel, Assistant Professor, SUNY Oneonta
Sarah E. Jones (Assistant Professor, Ohio University | ASU Alum)
Bryan J. McCann, Associate Professor, Louisiana State University
Sasha Sanders, PhD Candidate, University of South Florida
Diana Casteel, PhD Student, University of Illinois at Chicago
Cara Wallis, Associate Professor, Texas A&M
Amber Johnson, Associate Professor, Saint Louis University
Inbal Leibovits, PhD student, UT Austin
Emily Riewestahl, Doctoral Student, Texas A&M University
Jo Hsu, Assistant Professor, UT Austin
Anjana Mudambi, Assistant Professor, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Adjunct Lecturer
Suzanne Pullen, PHD, Lecturer, San Francisco State University
Gender studies alum, California State University, Long Beach
Ana Lisa Eberline, Doctoral Student, University of Illinois UC
Jess Alberts, President’s Professor, Arizona State University, Tempe
M. Hadassah Ward Hill, M.A., PhD Student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Brooks Oglesby, PhD Candidate, University of South Florida
Cindy Phu, Assistant Professor, Pasadena City College
Andrew S. Eick, Graduate Student, University of Central Missouri
J. Macgregor Wise, Professor, Arizona State University
Allison Hawn, PhD Candidate, Arizona State University
Brandon Ferderer, Instructor, Arizona State University
Sandra Rath, Ph.D., Professor, Central Arizona College
Deanna Shoemaker, Assoc. Prof, Monmouth University
Marisa Flores, Doctoral Candidate (Department of Comm and Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion), University of Oklahoma
Brittney Morrissey, Doctoral Student, University of Oklahoma
Kate Lockwood Harris, Assistant Professor, University of Minnesota
Christine E. Crouse-Dick, Professor, Bethel College (Kansas)
Bri Ozalas, M.A. (James Madison University), Adjunct Faculty, Rowan University
Sue Ellen McComas, Associate Professor at Firelands Bowling Green State University, Ohio
Euni Kim, PhD Student, University of Utah
Alixandria Lopez, Tenure-track professor, Mt. San Antonio College
Emily Krebs, PhD Student/GTA, University of Utah
Oliver Tripp, Masters student, San Francisco State University
Tiffany Sarkisian, Communication Studies Instructor, Clovis Community College
Sergio F. Juárez, Assistant Professor, California State University Fresno
Bernadette Marie Calafell, Chair and Professor, Critical Race and Ethnic Studies, Gonzaga University
Karma R. Chávez, Associate Professor, the University of Texas at Austin
Robin Duffee, PhD Student, Penn State University
Bethany Keeley-Jonker, Associate Professor, Trinity Christian College
Sara Baugh-Harris, Faculty, Agnes Scott College
Mary Kiura, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Nikki Truscelli, Doctoral Candidate, Arizona State University
Kristina Ruiz-Mesa, Associate Professor, Cal State LA
Diane Grimes, associate professor, Syracuse University
M. Hadassah Ward Hill, M.A., PhD Student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Shelby Swafford, PhD Candidate, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale
Lisa King, Associate Professor, University of Tennessee-Knoxville
Marisa Flores, Doctoral Candidate (Department of Comm and Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion), University of Oklahoma
Jessica Hatrick, Doctoral Student, University of Southern California
Matt Parnell, PhD Student, Pennsylvania State University
Meredith Moore, Doctoral Student, Colorado State University
Miranda McCreary, doctoral student, Colorado State University
Yiamar Rivera Matos, PhD student, Arizona State University
Ronae Matriano, Graduate Student, Arizona State University
Jocelyn Gómez, PhD Candidate, University of New Mexico
Abigail Gabriel, Doctoral student, Arizona State University
Stephanie L. Hartzell, Assistant Professor, CSU Long Beach
Dina Azzam, Graduate student and T.A.
Curtis Chamblee, PhD student, University of Memphis Fall 2020
Katherine Irish, MA, a Midwestern Univ graduate
Katherine Denker, Associate Professor, Ball State University
Lucy Niess, Doctoral Student, Arizona State University
Cerianne Robertson, PhD student, University of Southern California
Haley Schaaf, Graduate Student, Arizona State University
Michelle Colpean, PhD, Independent Scholar
Cameron Brown, PhD Student, University of Iowa
Brittany Romanello, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Mariah Wellman, PhD Student, University of Utah
Devika Chawla. Professor, Ohio University
Claudia Vega, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Srividya Ramasubramanian, Professor of Communication, Texas A&M University
Anne Oeldorf-Hirsch, Assistant Professor, University of Connecticut
Ritika Popli, Phd Student, Ohio University
Jennifer Sandoval, Associate Professor, Nicholson School of Communication and Media, University of Central Florida
Taylor Johnson, PhD Candidate, University of Utah
Julia Medhurst, Doctoral Student, Texas A&M University
Tomeka M. Robinson, Associate Professor & Director of Forensics, Hofstra University
Mariah Wellman, PhD Student, University of Utah
Jamison Warren, Graduate Student, California State University Sacramento
Cris Tietsort, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Perry B. Johnson, Ph.D. Candidate, USC
Kelsea Schulenberg, Master’s student, Clemson University
Caitlin Joy Dobson, PhD Student, USC Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism
Chrys, Graduate Women of Color, SW University
Anthony R. Ramirez, Ph.D. Student, Texas A&M University
ARVIND KUAMR ,PHD in Mass Communication and Journalism,Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar Central University Lucknow -India
Nic Bradley, Graduate Student, Texas A&M University
Paulina Lanz, PhD Student, USC Annenberg
David C. Oh, Associate Professor, Ramapo College of NJ
Paulina Lanz, PhD Student, USC Annenberg
Kurt Imhoff, Graduate Teaching Associate, Ohio University
Nic Bradley, Graduate Student, Texas A&M University
Tyler Wyckoff, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Los Rios Community College District
Heather Matthys, PhD Student, Ohio University
Jameien Taylor, Lecturer, Arizona State University
Liane O'Neill, Master's student, University of Utah
Aryana Gooley-Carson, M.A.
Valeria Ochoa, Spanish PhD student, ASU
Heidi M Rose, Professor and Chair, Department of Communication, Villanova University
Jessica M. F. Hughes, assistant professor, Millersville University
Mackenzie Schnell, student/TA, University of Texas at Austin
Heewon Kim, Assistant Professor, Arizona State University
Angel Echevarria, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Bethany Davis, Graduate Teaching Associate, CSU, Sacramento
Nivethitha Ketheeswaran, Ph.D. Student, University of South Florida
Ambar Basu, Professor, University of South Florida
Chris McRae, Associate Professor, University of South Florida
Latinx Graduate Student - M.A.
Steven Ryder, Queer Doctoral Candidate, University of South Florida
Bachir Sirois-Moumni, Étudiant au doctorat/chargé de cours, Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM)
Paolo Granata, University of Toronto
Aubrey Huber, Assistant Professor University of South Florida
Raymie E. McKerrow, Professor Emeritus, Ohio University
Brianna R. Cusanno, PhD student and NSF Graduate Research Fellow, University of South Florida
Duncan Stewart, PhD Student, University of Utah
Laura W. Black, Professor, Ohio University
Chaitra Kulkarni, PhD student, Texas Tech University
PhD Student T. Denny Sanford School, ASU
Jonathan Baker, PhD Student, University of South Florida
Thomas F. Corrigan, Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator, California State University, San Bernardino
Kyle Hanners - Doctoral Student, Arizona State University
Terrie Wong, Lecturer, Arizona State University
PhD student, Arizona State University
Melissa W. Aleman, Professor, James Madison University
Graduate Student of Color
Joshua T Horton, PhD student, Arizona State University
Megan Morrissey, Associate Professor, University of North Texas
Christina van Essen, Graduate Teaching Associate, ASU
Matthew Houdek, Lecturer & First Year Writing Coordinator, Rochester Institute of Technology
Keisuke Kimura, Doctoral Student, University of New Mexico
Kristin Drogos, research faculty, University of Michigan
Steve Depoe, Professor and Head, Department of Communication, University of Cincinnati
Kristiana L. Báez, PhD student, University of Iowa
Rachel Guldin, Doctoral Candidate/Graduate Employee, University of Oregon
Teresa Caprioglio, PhD student, University of Oregon
Dacheng Zhang, PhD Student, Arizona State University
Andrea Alarcon, PhD candidate, University of Southern California
Angela Gist-Mackey, Assistant Professor, University of Kansas
Robert Mejia, Associate Professor, North Dakota State University
M. Hadassah Ward Hill, M.A., PhD Student, University of Colorado, Boulder
Tyler Wyckoff, Adjunct Assistant Professor, Los Rios Community College District
Rebecca J. Meisenbach, Associate Professor, University of Missouri
FERNANDA DURAND, Communications strategist,
Adrianna Henderson, Student
Zoe Wagner, MA Candidate, University of Cincinnati
Anonymous, University of Cincinnati
Chris Laycock - Graduate Student & Student-Teacher
Cassandra Snyder, PhD student, Arizona State University
Chris Laycock - Graduate Student & Student-Teacher
Anonymous, University of Cincinnati
Zoe Wagner, MA Candidate, University of Cincinnati
Isabella Flores, Graduate Student, CSU, Fresno
Kisa Clark, PhD Student, University of Oregon
Alejandra De Alba, Graduate Student, CSU Fresno
Tim Kuhn, Professor and Chair, U. of Colorado Boulder
Nicholas B. Lacy, Graduate Teaching Associate/Consultant, San Diego State University
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