Harvard Acknowledged Slavery in its History

Harvard University acknowledged that nearly 100 people were enslaved by the university after its foundation in 1636 in a 130-page report released on Tuesday.

The report focused on Harvard University’s involvement in slavery and, after slavery was abolished, the university’s “abusive” eugenics and “race science” studies and experiments.

The report was titled “Harvard and the Legacy of Slavery,” and began to be written in 2019 by Tomiko Brown-Nagin, dean of Harvard Radcliffe Institute, and Daniel P.S. Paul Professor of Constitutional Law and Professor of History.

In the late 19th to 20th century, several presidents and professors at the Ivy League university promoted ‘race science’ and eugenics and conducted “abusive” research, which included photographing of “enslaved and subjugated human beings,” and also noted that the documents and findings of these investigations are still on campus.

The research also exposed how the university benefitted from slavery, which included slave ownership and donations from individuals who gained their money through slave industries.

The report suggested that Harvard should create a memorial in commemoration of the enslaved people, along with the $100 million that will be spent on implementing the report’s recommendations.

“We must acknowledge the harm that Harvard has done. But it is also important that we do not — as has been done in the past — bury stories of Black resistance, excellence, and leadership. These women and men are also part of our history — also part of our legacy.” said Brown-Nagin.


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