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Baker Library at Harvard

June 2, 2022

Harvard University Details its Ties to Slavery and Promises a Reckoning

Ask students: What are some of Harvard’s ties to slavery? What are some of the actions Harvard has proposed to address past history with slavery?

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Summary

America’s oldest institution of higher education, Harvard University, is beginning to come to terms with its own history and role in slavery. The school is out with a new report detailing its extensive entanglement and legacy. Tomiko Brown-Nagin, dean of the Harvard Radcliffe Institute, joins Jeffrey Brown to discuss.

Remote video URL

Five Facts

  • Why have Harvard’s ties to slavery recently come to light?
  • Who has written a book about Harvard’s ties to slavery?
  • What are some of Harvard’s ties to slavery?
  • What are some of the actions Harvard has proposed to address past history with slavery?
  • How else might Harvard address its former ties to slavery, according to this piece?

Focus Questions

How do you think institutions such as universities should address their histories of benefiting from the work of slaves?

Media literacy: Who else would you want to hear from to better understand this story?

For More

Harvard drops standardized test requirement through 2026

Republished with permission from PBS NewsHour Classroom.

PBS NewsHour Classroom

PBS NewsHour Classroom helps teachers and students identify the who, what, where and why-it-matters of the major national and international news stories.

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