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Jordan College of the Arts

JCA Social Justice & Diversity Task Force

Statement of Purpose

We, the Jordan College of the Arts community, pledge to create a fully inclusive environment for our students, faculty, and staff. We recognize that the arts are a mechanism to explain and communicate human behaviors, thoughts, and endeavors in pursuit of a common good as well as a tool for initiating difficult conversations, highlighting injustice, promoting peace and reconciliation, and so much more. Therefore, as an arts institution, we believe we are in a unique and powerful position to positively impact our campus and community environment in the areas of social justice and diversity. Out of this understanding of our goals and our unique capacity for positive influence, members of our JCA community created the JCA SJD Taskforce.

The JCA SJD Taskforce aims:

  1. To create a courageous and creative space for productive conversations concerning the aspects of our college that perpetuate oppression such as damaging, unjust attitudes and behaviors regarding race, religion, economic status, gender identity, sexual identity, learning abilities, physical abilities, political ideals, or any other status that serves to marginalize an artist
  2. To expand our communal dialogue into actionable steps that foster an inclusive community
  3. To commit to long-term engagement and activism with the issues of justice, diversity, and inclusion so that the work continues throughout the student and personnel turnover that is inherent in an institution of higher education

 

Task Force Structure

The JCA SJD Task Force is comprised of students, faculty, and staff members of JCA organized into several committees (listed below). The Task Force at large aims to convene in person at least twice per academic year with individual committees meeting as needed.

JCA SJD Task Force Committees include: 

  • Campus Connection (task force connection with campus services like BU Be Well, SDS, CFV, Counseling Center)
  • Diversity Center Connection
  • Student Government Association Connection
  • External Communications (i.e. JCA SJD Task Force webpage, social media, etc.)
  • Admission and Entrance Process (i.e. recruiting methods, audition and application process, etc.)
  • Curriculum and Course Offerings
  • Library Support (Lib Guide creation and related resources)
  • The JCA SJD “Story Bus” (collecting stories of student, faculty, and staff lived experiences on campus)
  • Dialogue Groups
  • Related Programming (related film screenings, trainings, book discussion groups, etc.)
  • Community Outreach/Programming
  • Identity (creating statement of purpose)
  • Founder’s Day

JCA students, faculty, and staff interested in joining should contact Dean Brooks at lbrooks@butler.edu.

JCA Land Acknowledgement

In the fall semester, 2019, the Jordan College of the Arts decided to include a land acknowledgement statement in all of its printed programs. The statement was crafted by Dr. Courtney Mohler (JCA) and Dr. Gina Forrest (Diversity Center).

JCA LAND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT STATEMENT

We acknowledge that we gather here at Butler University on the traditional land of indigenous peoples including the Potawatomi, Miami, Delaware, and Shawnee. 

We honor with gratitude the land itself and the indigenous peoples past and present who have stewarded it throughout the generations.

This calls us to commit to continuing to learn how to be better stewards of the land we inhabit, while also acknowledging that some were brought to this land not by choice.

Injustice-Inspired Art: An Exhibit

JCA is proud to host an online gallery of art created by Butler students, faculty, and staff, and inspired by injustice. Please note: the content of this exhibit will necessarily engage with injustice, racism, and oppression; therefore, content will be emotionally and intellectually challenging and may be triggering for some. We will do our best to place appropriate warnings on especially graphic or intense content.

Victoria Hadrick: "Alex Monologue"

Artist Statement: I'm Victoria Hadrick, an upcoming sophomore at Butler University. In the fall semester of my first year, I enrolled in a scriptwriter’s class (PCA-TH 253). For this class, I wrote a script about different teens discussing their experiences regarding social issues while in therapy. With everything occurring in the world right now, I reread my script and realized I wanted to share it with others to help bring light to these important perspectives. View video here.

 

Diane Timmerman and Indy Shakes: "Past Words Present Times"

Diane Timmerman, Chair of the Butler University Department of Theatre, is also the Artistic Director for The Indianapolis Shakespeare Company, an Equity theatre company here in Indianapolis. Indy Shakes has created PAST WORDS PRESENT TIMES, a free online offering created in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. In addition to Diane, the Company includes Butler Theatre alumni, and one alum—Isaiah Moore—who is in this PAST WORDS presentation. 

PAST WORDS PRESENT TIMES will run for one month, beginning Saturday, June 20. Audiences are asked to donate to local Near Northwest-side non profits that support our NNW neighbors: Aspire House, Flanner House, and also computers for kids at Ignite Academy. Also please do visit Cleo's Bodega & Cafe, an awesome café that has terrific smoothies and grilled cheese!

Join the online event here.

 

Sandbox Student Productions: "African Americana"

Butler's very own student organization, Sandbox Student Productions, has released their response to the Black Lives Matter movement with African Americana, a play by Aurin Squire. Please support Sandbox—and the organizations THEY support—by watching their work which is posted here.

Sandbox Student Productions statement: "We at Sandbox Student Productions are dedicated to continuous conversations about the injustices we see around us. African Americana offers an exploration of racism and police brutality to further our individual understanding and facilitate dialogue within our student body. We encourage you to take time to educate yourselves, as we have also been doing, and to share your passions with those around you."
 

 

Xan Korman (Butler student)

Artist Statement: I was at the protests for almost a week straight; I just missed one day. On Saturday, I was tear gassed and shot in the foot with a pepper bullet. On Sunday, I was tear gassed again, and I saw police throw flashbangs because people weren’t allowed to walk across a street in the city and they were upset about it. All of these photos showcase emotion through writing or facial expressions. I have been so moved by some of the speeches I’ve heard at these protests. I’ve received nothing but kind words by protestors, because as one of them said that I’m on the front lines with them, putting myself in danger, to tell the story. I believe that it’s right for media to be at the protests to show the events that happen, which might not be showcased by the mainstream television/news outlets.

Click on the image below to view full gallery with artists notes. CONTENT WARNING: Some images in the gallery depict gore and violence.

protesters holding a sign reading "No Lives Matter Until BLACK LIVES MATTER"

Connect with Us

Attend an Event

In this space, we will highlight upcoming arts events related to social justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion. View a full calendar of events on the Butler Arts Center website.

Follow us on Social Media

Like and follow JCA on Facebook and Instagram!

Questions?

Contact Dean Brooks at lbrooks@butler.edu

Report an Incident of Bias

Learn more about how incidents of bias are addressed on campus. If you would like to report an incident of bias, reporting options and explanation of processes are available online, or you can go directly to the Bias Incident Reporting Form.

If you wish to report something that concerns you directly to the JCA Dean Lisa Brooks, you may do so here. Reports are anonymous unless you choose otherwise.

Efroymson Diversity Center

The JCA SJD Taskforce works closely with the Department of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion on campus which includes the Efroymson Diversity Center. 

The Diversity Center is located in the garden level of Atherton Union (AU 004). It serves as an open and inclusive symbol to the Butler campus with lounge and study space, prayer/meditation room, office space for professional staff and student organizations, and more. Learn more about the Diversity Center.

Readings and Resources

The following list of readings and resources gathers together materials from several existing lists; these have been presented in their entirety to credit the compilers for their efforts. Apologies in advance for occasional incomplete bibliographic information, as well as for some duplication. View the full, compiled list here OR access specific subjects via the title links below: