This Higher Education Roundtable discussion, chaired by Dr. Adesola Akinleye and Henrietta Hale (co-director, ID) focused on how we can come together to recognise ways in which we might be unknowingly performing systemic racism in our classrooms, language, and through our sense of history. It was part of a series of annual Roundtables discussing issues in Higher Education. ID also commissioned an essay from Dr. Akinleye in preparation for the session.
The below document was produced following Independent Dance’s 2020 Higher Education Roundtable.
Dr. Adesola Akinleye is a choreographer and artist-scholar. She is an Assistant Professor in the Dance Division at Texas Woman’s University. She is an Affiliate Researcher, MIT, Arts Culture and Technology, and Visiting Artist at Center for Art, Science and Technology at MIT, and a Theatrum Mundi Fellow. She began her career as a dancer with Dance Theatre of Harlem Workshop Ensemble (USA) later working in UK Companies such as Green Candle and Carol Straker Dance Company. Over the past twenty years she has created dance works ranging from live performance that is often site-specific and involves a cross-section of the community to dance films, installations and texts. Her work is characterized by an interest in voicing people’s lived-experiences in Places through creative moving portraiture. A key aspect of her process is the artistry of opening creative practices to everyone from ballerinas to architects to women in low wage employment to performance for young audiences. Her most recent monograph is part of the Society for Dance Research In Conversation series – Dance, Architecture and Engineering: Dance in Dialogue.