#PandemicTruths: A declaration of interdependence

Othering and belonging seem to me to be the critical issues for our species at this point in our history. I am recently retired. For the past 30 years, I worked in food banking. In that time, I have had a chance to observe and appreciate the way our...

#PandemicTruths: Moving beyond our safe spaces

If we truly believe in humanity, in the possibility of the evolution of the human spirit, this must be a time of expanding our reach in a way that ensures everyone's most basic needs are met, their birthright to dream and become, supported and...

Poem: A Love Supreme

Across seven seas and barren borders, we are all connected and conjoined. Through the pain and the pandemic, the exploitation and the expropriation, Through the crisis of the changing climate and the desolate deserts without food, Through the oil...

Covid-19: What Will We Remember?

What will we care to re-member about the era of the Covid-19 pandemic? Some events become a generational marker, an experience shared by so many in such profound ways that the ripples last decades. The “Great Depression” of the 1930s and the US war...

Can we disarm vigilantes by bridging?

Today, another vigilante escaped justice. Somehow, a jury in Wisconsin found that Kyle Rittenhouse was justified in driving across a state border and killing two protesters, wounding a third, and firing on a fourth with a semi-automatic rifle. I can...

The Role of Religion in Bridging Work

"When I took my shahada," said Curtis Toler, "my past sins were erased and I could start a new life." Curtis had spent many years as a high-ranking gang leader in Chicago, and he had hurt many people. But he had reached what author Amanda Ripley...

Blog: The US Owes a Debt to Haiti and to Haitian Migrants

The scenes of Haitian migrants being herded like cattle and whipped like slaves by Border Patrol agents on horseback at the US-Mexico border at Del Rio, Texas are typical of how Haitians have been treated since the 1804 Haitian revolution. Haiti is...

Blog: Locating a Dignified Future in the Future of Work

There is solid basis for concern when setting sights on a dignified labor sector in the future from the vantage point of current indignities suffered by many workers. The impact of technology in labor has a long history in economic analysis. The rise...

Blog: Should Non-citizens be Allowed to Vote in Local Elections?

This past Tuesday evening, upon invitation, I spoke before the Richmond, California, City Council on a topic upon which I conducted considerable prior research: non-citizen voting in municipal elections. The experience was one of the most...

Blog: The backlash is here: Behind the absurd attacks on 'Critical Race Theory'

In mid-April, I noticed something strange was happening. Across mainstream media, but especially conservative/ right-wing media, there was a spate of articles and op-eds attacking the notion of “equity.”

From Tulsa, Texas, to Turkey: The Price of Denial

There has been a spate of recent media coverage and documentaries to mark the 100-year anniversary of the massacre. But this panorama of coverage is in striking contrast to how this event was originally covered by the media, let alone addressed by public authorities.

Blog: Pain of police killings ripples outward to traumatize Black people and communities across US

It’s been one year since George Floyd’s murder by a Minneapolis police officer set off the largest protests in U.S. history and a national reckoning with racism. Beyond the protests, every police killing – indeed, every violent act by police toward...

Blog: Chauvin verdict a wakeup call for medicine and public health

The Chauvin verdict provides a much needed expression of hope and solace for the Floyd family and to the millions of black people for whom his death was a painful reminder of the collective vulnerability of being harmed by the police.

Blog: How to protect privacy & public health in Covid-19

The year 2020 has witnessed the overlapping public health crises of a global pandemic and ongoing police violence—both of which underscore the devastating effects of systemic racism in the US.

Blog: A solution to Africa's food insecurity

Any serious attempt to tackle many of Africa’s interlocking socio-political and economic challenges, such as food insecurity, must accept that Africa’s “problems” are global as much as they are local.

Explore Othering and Belonging

Black Lives Matter, A Year After Ferguson (featuring john a. powell)

Director john a. powell is featured in this video produced by AJ+ one year after Michael Brown's killing in Ferguson, Missouri.

Karen Tei Yamashita Event Series

Karen Tei Yamashita is the author of seven books, including I Hotel, finalist for the National Book Award, and most recently, Sansei and Sensibility. Recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters from the National Book Foundation, the John Dos Passos Prize for Literature and a U.S. Artists’ Ford Foundation Fellowship, she is professor emerita of literature and creative writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Animated Explainer Video Series

Our animated explainer videos break down some of the key principles that guide our work at the Othering & Belonging Institute. Follow the links below to view the videos, to read transcripts of the audio, and to learn more about each concept.