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The Stolen Beam Series: A Study of Reparations for Descendants of African Slaves in the U.S.

Tue, Sep 19, 2023, 7:00 PM EDT – Tue, Nov 21, 2023, 8:30 PM EST
Dates Breakdown
Tue, Sep 19, 2023, 7:00 – 8:30 PM EDT
Session 1
Tue, Oct 3, 2023, 7:00 – 8:30 PM EDT
Session 2
Tue, Oct 17, 2023, 7:00 – 8:30 PM EDT
Session 3
Tue, Nov 7, 2023, 7:00 – 8:30 PM EST
Session 4
Tue, Nov 21, 2023, 7:00 – 8:30 PM EST
Session 5

The Stolen Beam Series is a 5-session course of educational engagement and personal reflection on the topic of reparations for African Americans, with a focus on the legacy of African enslavement and 400 years of anti-Black racism. We consider what was stolen, what may be owed, historical examples of reparations, current challenges and controversies, and faith-based reparations statements and examples. The class materials offer participants a fuller perspective on US history, one that many of us never learned, that centers on the historical and lived experience of African Americans. The class asks participants to consider the case for reparations as a remedy for past injustice and continued harms to descendants of enslaved African people, and as a concrete response to the ongoing racial wealth gap in this country. Finally, the Stolen Beam series offers participants an opportunity to engage heads and hearts, in a spirit of deep listening and reflection, honest and respectful sharing, that for some becomes a journey of discovery and transformation. The class offers an opportunity to study and reflect on some of the writings of prominent thought leaders on the topic of reparations for African Americans as a path to restorative justice. It reviews the case for reparations, arguments against reparations, various definitions of reparations, U.S. House Resolution 40, faith-related cases for reparations, perspectives including post-Holocaust history, and various models of reparations programs, past, present and future.

The Stolen Beam has been offered throughout the U.S., including in Evanston, IL; Cotati, CA; Longmeadow, MA; Pelham, MA; Amherst, MA; Northampton, MA; and Charlotte, NC. It was placed on the Reconstructing Judaism website for use by congregations interested in learning more about reparations for African Americans, and was used by their Board of Governors. The Stolen Beam has been co-sponsored by the African Heritage Reparations Assembly (AHRA) of Amherst, MA as part of their educational campaign.



Andrea Battle

Jeffrey Gold

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