Race Matters was created in response to the resurgence of national and global attention on the matter of civil rights in America and around the world across the Black Diaspora. To amplify the voices advancing these issues in Chicago and across the country, we are sharing this digital platform as part of an ongoing internal dialogue about how racism intersects with our work here at Court Theatre and how we can, as one community, embrace an antiracist future within our daily lives, within our work culture, and within our city.
- June 2020: Amid social unrest in Chicago and around the world in response to the Black Lives Matter global movement Court Theatre’s leadership released its statement The Work Ahead of Us in solidarity.
- June-July 2020: At this time staff began to meet internally across the organization in recognition of the need for a more considered, rigorous, and intentional response to the American legacy of systemic racism and its impact on our work and work culture.
- July-September 2020: Since June of this year all vested staff and leadership have embarked on the journey of cultivating what we hope is an ongoing systems of care, consideration, and policymaking to pursue an antiracist future at Court Theatre by establishing the following:
- Staff-led affinity and ally groups for earnest dialogue about how racism and white supremacy impacts how we navigate our work and our lives.
- Collective reading and analysis of the White American Theatre: We See You manifesto and demands to explore within each department what aspects of these demands we can genuinely, systemically, and permanently implement for the betterment of our work to become an antiracist organization.
- Proportioning our antiracism work as central and integral to everything we do, interrogating, and building upon these efforts at the senior staff level within our weekly leadership meetings.
- October 2020: Race Matters blog is established in recognition of the resurgence of the national and global dialogue on the matter of civil rights in America. This space not only offers a vessel for expression in response to the ongoing dialogue on race, as it pertains to the cultural industries and civic action broadly. This space also acts as a venue for full-bodied transparency about our ongoing antiracism work at Court Theatre internally. Race Matters at its core is a means to ensure our public is informed and able to hold us to account in regard to our forward progress—in accordance, as our work evolves we will continue to update this page.