The Black Keaning
In the spring of 2016, HIST 3305: Pre-1900 African American History course became a space to examine the history and memory of black life at Kean University. Using the university's special collections as well as primary sources from local archives, students in this class worked to build an institutional history of race relations at Kean, telling the story of the dynamics of race and power at the school and on its grounds over the past 250 years. The course culminated in the development of The BlacKeaning: Illuminating Black Lives at Kean University, a campus tour highlighting this racial history of the school. Materials from The BlacKeaning tour are now housed at the Kean University Archives. This project offered students the opportunity to craft new narratives about race and race relations at the university and in the surrounding community and to take part in national conversations about race and memory in the United States.