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U of M Will Hold "Writing on the Wall" Project April 4-8

For release: March 24, 2011
For press information, contact Student Activities Council, 901-678-8679

The Student Activities Council at the University will host the “Writing on the Wall” Project on the U of M’s Student Plaza April 4-8. The wall is a physical representation of the words, acts, and scenarios that divide people. Each cinder block will be designed by a member of the campus community to represent a real life experience or emotion based on discrimination that an individual has faced. The blocks will depict the history of various forms of discrimination experienced by people every day. The wall will demonstrate the barrier to a brighter tomorrow that individuals will face unless the issues illustrated by the words written on the blocks are addressed, then “torn down.”

In spring 2009, more than 300 students, faculty, and staff contributed cinder blocks, sharing the words and phrases that have hurt them. At the end of the week, more than 500 individuals of all different races, nationalities, abilities, orientations, and religions came together to ceremonially dismantle the wall, symbolically eradicating hatred and the barriers that hatred creates in society. The U of M community will have the opportunity to be a part of this project again by contributing cinder blocks, having intentional discussions, and symbolically destroying barriers by coming together to tear down the wall. 

Students on campuses nationwide have created walls as part of the project. At the U of M, the Writing on the Wall Project is a part of the eighth annual “Why Do You Hate Me?” Week, which addresses issues of discrimination. The week also will feature a keynote speech by Arun Ghandi April 4 at 7 p.m. in the Rose Theatre, Homosexuality for Sale (an interactive discussion addressing privileges), and the Tunnel of Oppression (an interactive simulation of discrimination) April 6 and 7 from 7 to 9 p.m. in the University Center Ballroom.

Students, faculty, and staff have the opportunity to contribute cinder blocks to the project. There are open sessions for painting cinder blocks now through March 29 in University Center Involvement Zone, Room 227 A. Individuals are welcome to decorate cinder blocks during the operating hours of the University Center.

An informational video about the Writing on the Wall Project is online at www.youtube.com/watch?v=r3JpUThJXPs.

More information about the U of M’s Writing on the Wall Project is available online at www.memphis.edu/sac  or by phone at 901-678-8679.

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