An upcoming series of panel discussions aim to increase awareness of America’s full history as it relates to race and to promote productive conversations around sustaining positive change.

Hosted by the Harvey and Lucinda Gantt Multicultural Center in the Division of Inclusion and Equity and the Department of Community Achievement and Student Empowerment in the Division of Student Affairs, the series, “Power of Perspective,” is free and open to all Clemson faculty, students and staff.

“This series was sparked by recent national conversations around racial inequity in the U.S. and the awareness that many were taught an incomplete American history during K-12 and thus struggle to understand the systemic nature of discrimination,” said Kendra Stewart-Tillman, executive director of the Gantt Center.

The first discussion, “Independence Day: Land of the Free?” will be at noon July 9 with a faculty discussing the celebration of the Fourth of July holiday and its implications and dissonance for many communities of color.

DeOnte Brown, assistant dean of students in the Division of Student Affairs, said having difficult conversations is important to spark curiosity and to show the benefit of critical analysis in effecting change in society.

“I hope people leave this conversation with a respect for how context matters in these conversations,” he said. “By asking the simple question of whose voice is not represented or who is disproportionately impacted, we can begin to understand the challenges that exist.”

Panelists at the “Independence Day: Land of the Free?” event will be Abel Bartley, professor of African American and Urban History; Vernon Burton, Judge Matthew J. Perry, Jr. Distinguished Professor of History; and Angela Naimou, associate professor of English.

R.S.V.P. to participate here: bit.ly/CUPowerofPerspective.

The second panel discussion, “Matter of Policy: Who has Influence?” will be at noon July 30.