Keuka lecture focuses on intersection of race, education

Conversations surrounding issues of race are neither easy nor comfortable, but they will be necessary on campus if Keuka College and similar institutions are to thrive in an increasingly diverse society.

That was the message delivered by Beverly Daniel Tatum to a packed Norton Chapel during the 31st annual Carl and Fanny Fribolin lecture.

The lecture, which was held in a fireside chat format facilitated by interim College President Amy Storey, capped Fribolin Fest — a day of on-campus events and activities focused on diversity and social justice.

Tatum — a clinical psychologist, and author of “Can We Talk about Race? And Other Conversations in an Era of School Resegregation” and “Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?” — said cultivating a climate of inclusivity is not a challenge unique to the Finger Lakes.

“I find that on almost every campus there are certain things that are common,” she said. “One of those things is discomfort in talking about race.”

That discomfort is instilled at a young age, she said, and reinforced by societal boundaries both geographical and institutional.

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