by Curtis Dozier, Director of Pharos
2020 has been a year in which the increasing visibility and influence of overtly white supremacist groups in the United States continued, including those whose use of Greco-Roman antiquity Pharos documents. But it was also the year that a police officer murdered George Floyd (and many other Black people) and that the Coronavirus Pandemic took a disproportionate toll on communities of color. As the insidious and deadly operation of racism and structural inequality at the heart of mainstream American institutions and social practices received widespread attention from white people who are ordinarily sheltered from it, I wasn’t always sure whether Pharos met a need. When police officers can kill Black people with impunity, when our nation’s economy and public health system treats Black and Brown lives as disposable, the latest essay about Juvenal on an avowedly white supremacist website did not always seem worthy of attention. Our country has a huge problem with overt racism, but we have an even bigger problem with the racism embedded to the point of invisibility — if you’re white — in every aspect of our society.