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If Elephants Could Talk: Racial Literacy for Healing School Conflicts

with Dr. Howard C. Stevenson
Wednesday, November 18th at 6:30pm

Thank you to the over-one-hundred-and-fifty guests from across the region and around the world who participated in this event, and thank you to Dr. Howard Stevenson for allowing us to share this video.

His talk was part of an ongoing series of parent dialogues on antiracist education at Gordon; the next public presentation in that series is Race in the USA: the remix, side a on January 12th. More at

On Wednesday, November 18th at 6:30pm, Gordon hosted a conversation with psychologist Dr. Howard C. Stevenson, author of Promoting Racial Literacy in Schools: Differences that Make a Difference. Stevenson's work focuses on how educators, community leaders, and parents can intervene to resolve racially stressful encounters in public spaces, neighborhoods and classrooms.

Dr. Stevenson is a nationally recognized clinical psychologist and researcher on negotiating racial conflicts using racial literacy for independent and public K–­12 schooling, community mental health centers, teachers, police, and parents. 

His talk was part of an ongoing series of parent dialogues on antiracist education being held at Gordon this year, and his presentation is part of several days he is spending with Gordon this year, working with parents, students, faculty, staff and trustees.

The presentation focused on racial literacy strategies to reduce, recast, and resolve the stress of in-the-moment, face-to-face racial encounters. Racial literacy calls for improving racial storytelling, mindfulness and assertiveness, fundamental skills in activism and healthy decision-making - all skills vital to creating a more just and antiracist community. 

The Gordon School is known regionally and nationally as a leader in multicultural education and antiracist work, with staff and faculty regularly called on to consult with organizations as varied as Sesame Workshop, Barnes and Noble, and the Association of Independent Schools of New England. In previous years, Gordon has hosted public events that included visits from Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum, Reverend Paula Lawrence Wehmiller, and Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair.  

This talk was open to the public and free of charge.