Social Justice Residential College

Understand the perspectives of marginalized populations.

Critically and compassionately examine issues of social justice. Examine topics including poverty, inequality, health care, immigration, LGBT issues and civil rights. Learn about grassroots activism. Advocate for social justice in the community.

Social Justice College Student Staff


Shirah Moffatt-Darko, Junior Fellow

Shirah Moffatt-Darko

"I appreciated the social justice res college for teaching me to dialogue with people with differing opinions, for teaching me how to tap into the passion, compassion, and genius of my peers, and for solidifying the importance of full participation in a community."

Hometown: Washington, D.C.
Major: early childhood education
semd001@bucknell.edu

Effiem Obasi, Junior Fellow

Effiem Obasi

"Being apart of the res. college experience allowed me to gain a lot of meaningful relationships while learning about a variety of different topics, from artificial intelligence in SoTech to Eastern European Folklore in the Arts Res. This really allowed me to venture out and explore things at Bucknell that I probably wouldn't have if it weren't for the Res College. The Social Justice Res College is special because there is a lot of intersectionality within different social justice issues such as food justice and income inequality or race and women's rights. It continues to amaze me how one can relate social justice issues to so many different things in the world and  SoJo does a wonderful jobs of making these connections."

Hometown: Los Angeles, Calif.
Major: psychology
euo001@bucknell.edu

Social Justice College Alumni


Foundation Seminar Course Choices


Course Details

  • The Civil Rights Movement on Stage
    Prof. Meenakshi Ponnuswami
    RESC 098 08
     
  • Movement(s) for Black Lives
    Prof. Khalil Saucier
    RESC 098 09

  • Questioning for the Common Good
    Prof. Bill Flack
    RESC 098 10

Questioning for the Common Good

In this Foundation Seminar, we will consider what it means to think, write, and discuss critically ideas and activities related to issues of social justice.

Thinking critically means questioning the way things are done, in order to improve them. Writing critically is a way to clarify our thinking and communicate it to others. Discussing our ideas and actions helps us all to learn from each other in ways that enrich our thinking, communication, and action. We will discuss a range of social justice issues, including racism, classism, sexism, and ableism.

Movement(s) for Black Lives

This course serves an introduction to the history of black freedom struggles, with particular attention to intellectual currents, organizational formations, and mass political movements. The course will focus on Civil Rights and Black Power movements, African and Caribbean anticolonial movements, and more recent movements for Black lives. Detailed attention will be given to issues of (non)violence, justice, punishment, inequality, redemption, transformation, and transcendence.

Through course readings, discussions, and films students will increase their capacity to analyze, evaluate, and interpret the banality of structural violence so as to create an informed foundation from which to respond, rather than react.  The course will engage an ensemble of complex and crucial questions about black life such as, What is freedom?  What does it mean to suffer? How have Black people globally thought (and dreamt) about freedom? Is there a dissimilarity between liberation and freedom? How have black thinkers engaged concepts such as justice and human rights?

The Civil Rights Movement on Stage

How should a young person fight injustice? Is it possible to change the hearts and minds of people in power? Is it better to work with the grass-roots, with those who have been denied justice? What's the use of mass mobilization, such as a big march or protest rally? Does social change happen in sudden leaps and bounds? Or does it happen gradually over time, in small, invisible acts of resistance that oppressed people perform every day? Is it really possible to change the system? How?

Many such questions confronted idealistic young African Americans in the 1950s and 60s, a period of fiery political and social movement and immense creativity. Examining the theatre and performance arts of the era, our course will introduce students to the history of the Civil Rights era. We will study how this transformative moment of history appeared from the vantage point of the American stage — a place which had once created ugly racist images, but where such images were now demolished and reconceptualized. 

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