UC Santa Barbara Arts & Lectures - Race to Justice

Ticket Office: (805) 893-3535
MON - FRI / 10AM - 5PM

Race to Justice

This is a moment of reckoning. As a nation, we are confronting evidence of inequality that reaches every corner of society. Arts & Lectures has a history of bringing complex issues to the forefront. Now, we are spearheading an in-depth look at systemic racism from every angle, including abolition, underlying conditions, reparations, criminal justice and more. Interdisciplinary and cross-departmental, this season-long series engages leading activists, creatives and thinkers to expand our understanding of racism and how race impacts society, and to inspire an expansive approach to advancing racial equality.

Most virtual events are hour-long programs. All times listed are Pacific.

Race to Justice virtual events are FREE for UCSB students (registration required).

Dr. Ibram X. Kendi

Mon, Oct 19 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

One of America's foremost historians and leading antiracist voices, Dr. Ibram X. Kendi is the bestselling author of How to Be an Antiracist and Stamped From the Beginning.
Past Event

Brittany K. Barnett

Tue, Oct 27 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A decorated attorney and activist, Brittany K. Barnett showcases the impact that formerly incarcerated people can have when they are able to not only survive, but thrive.
Past Event

Rhiannon Giddens
with Francesco Turrisi

there is no Other

Sun, Nov 15 / 11:00 AM Pacific / VIRTUAL

Showcasing her spectacular banjo and fiddle playing, passionate vocals and perceptive songwriting, Giddens will perform a special concert from her home in Ireland, followed by a Q&A.
Past Event

John Lewis: Good Trouble

Screening and Conversation with Filmmaker Dawn Porter

Tue, Nov 17 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

This film screening and conversation with filmmaker Dawn Porter will explore Congressman Lewis' legacy of fearless protest and how we can keep his campaign for justice alive.
Past Event

Sister Helen Prejean

Thu, Nov 19 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

The nation's foremost leader in efforts to abolish the death penalty, Sister Helen Prejean ignited a national debate on capital punishment with her bestselling book Dead Man Walking.
Past Event

Nikole Hannah-Jones

Tue, Dec 8 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

MacArthur Fellow Nikole Hannah-Jones is the creator of The New York Times Magazine's The 1619 Project, about the history and lasting legacy of American slavery.
Past Event

Ta-Nehisi Coates

Tue, Jan 12 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

Drawing comparisons to James Baldwin, Ta-Nehisi Coates is the author of Between the World and Me, Beautiful Struggle, We Were Eight Years in Power and The Water Dancer.
Past Event

Isabel Wilkerson

Caste: The Origins of our Discontents

Tue, Jan 26 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents, Isabel Wilkerson examines the unspoken caste system that has shaped America.
Past Event

Anna Deavere Smith

Notes From the Field / Snapshots: Portraits of a World in Transition

Tue, Feb 2 / 7:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

(Note special 7 PM start time.) Anna Deavere Smith uses her singular brand of theater to explore issues of community, character and diversity in America.
Past Event

Minnijean Brown-Trickey

Return to Little Rock: A Seminal Moment in American Civil Rights and Education

Fri, Feb 5 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A living witness to history – and an active participant who has helped shape it – Minnijean Brown-Trickey delivers a fascinating exploration of the battle against racism throughout the decades.
Past Event

W. Kamau Bell

Ending Racism in About an Hour

Thu, Feb 11 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A conversation with W. Kamau Bell, comedian, host of CNN's United Shades of America and ACLU Celebrity Ambassador for Racial Justice.
Past Event

Dr. Mae Jemison

Overcoming Obstacles, Breaking Barriers and Reaching for the Stars

Tue, Feb 23 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

Dedicated to building a world of opportunity and equality, physician and engineer Dr. Mae Jemison is a National Women's Hall of Fame inductee and the first woman of color to have traveled into space.
Past Event

LaToya Ruby Frazier

Art as Transformation: Using Photography for Social Change

Thu, Feb 25 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

MacArthur Fellow LaToya Ruby Frazier discusses the transformative power of images and how she uses photography to fight injustice and create a more representative self-portrait.
Past Event

Michelle Alexander

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

Thu, Mar 4 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A legal scholar, social justice advocate and author of The New Jim Crow, Michelle Alexander explores the modern legal system, revealing how mass incarceration has come to replace segregation.
Past Event

Allyson Felix

Advocacy and Equality in Sports and in Life

Tue, Apr 6 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A nine-time Olympic medalist, world record holder and one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People of 2020, track and field champion Allyson Felix is at the forefront of the fight for equality.
Past Event

Ranky Tanky

Thu, Apr 15 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

Winner of the 2020 Grammy for Best Regional Roots Music Album, Ranky Tanky is a dynamo quintet with an inspired take on the soulful songs of South Carolina’s Gullah culture.
Past Event

Dr. Robert Bullard

The Quest for Environmental and Racial Justice

Wed, Apr 21 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

With more than four decades of action advocating for racial equality and fair environmental and urban planning, Dr. Robert Bullard is widely considered the father of the environmental justice movement.
Past Event

Theaster Gates

Thu, Apr 29 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

An artist, musician and cultural planner, Theaster Gates draws on his training in urban planning to redeem spaces that have been left behind, upturning art values, land values and human values.
Past Event

Bryan Stevenson

American Injustice: Mercy, Humanity and Making a Difference

Fri, Apr 30 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

MacArthur Fellow Bryan Stevenson is an attorney, human rights activist, author of Just Mercy and founder of the Equal Justice Initiative.
Past Event

Heather McGhee

The Sum of Us: What Racism Costs Everyone and How We Can Prosper Together

Tue, May 4 / 5:00 PM Pacific / VIRTUAL

A renowned expert on the American economy, Heather McGhee is the author of The Sum of Us, which reveals the devastating true cost of racism, not just for people of color, but for everyone.
Past Event

We Are the Dream

The Kids of the Oakland MLK Oratorical Fest

Thu, Jun 3 / 8:30 PM Pacific / WEST WIND DRIVE-IN

This uplifting documentary follows students from across Oakland as they hone speeches inspired by the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and hope for a coveted spot in the MLK Oratorical Fest finals.
Past Event

Race to Justice Advisory Committee: Susannah Scott, Divisional Chair of the Academic Senate; Sharon Tettegah, Director of the Center for Black Studies Research; Ingrid Banks, Chair of the Department of Black Studies; Kim Yasuda, Chair of the Department of Art; Charles Hale, SAGE Sara Miller McCune Dean of Social Sciences; and Belinda Robnett, Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Lead Sponsors: Marcy Carsey, Connie Frank & Evan Thompson, Patty & John MacFarlane,
Sara Miller McCune, Santa Barbara Foundation, Lynda Weinman & Bruce Heavin, Dick Wolf, and Zegar Family Foundation.

UC Santa Barbara campus partners: Department of Black Studies, Center for Black Studies Research, Division of Social Sciences, Division of Humanities and Fine Arts, Division of Mathematical, Life, and Physical Sciences, Division of Student Affairs, Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, Graduate Division, Bren School for Environmental Science & Management, College of Creative Studies, College of Engineering, MultiCultural Center, Carsey-Wolf Center, UCSB Library | UCSB Reads, Office of the Chancellor, Office of the Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and Office of the Executive Vice Chancellor

Community Partners: Natalie Orfalea Foundation & Lou Buglioli.

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