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Our Mission

Teaching, Studying and Promoting Civil Rights and Social Change

The Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change advances its mission of teaching, studying, and promoting civil rights and social change primarily through education, research, innovative campaigns, and community engagement. For more than twenty years, the Hooks Institute has developed an impressive track record of educating, engaging, and empowering the community.


Read the FY 2019-20 Hooks Annual Report!

The Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change's mission is teaching, studying, and promoting civil rights and social change by ameliorating racial, economic, and social disparities in Memphis and the Mid-South. We do this by using the collective scholarship and resources of the university community.  Learn how we realized this goal during the 2019-20 fiscal year.

Please contact bhi@memphis.edu or call 901.678.3974 for printed copies of the report.


Read the 2020 Hooks Institute Policy Papers

2020 Hooks Policy PapersLet Every Voice Be Heard: Protecting the Right to Vote and American Democracy

As we headed into one of the most critical election seasons in our nation's history, the Hooks Institute presented the sixth edition of its Policy Papers "Let Every Voice Be Heard: Protecting the Right to Vote and American Democracy." The 2020 Policy Papers focus on voting rights, voter engagement and apathy, and tactics to suppress voting.

For this edition of the Policy Papers, the Hooks Institute assembled experts on voting rights, voting access, and voter engagement to address essential issues critical to preserving our most fundamental democratic right, the right to vote.

Obtaining Copies of the Policy Papers
For information on obtaining physical copies of the Policy Papers, contact the Hooks Institute at bhi@memphis.edu or 901.678.3974. Digital copies are available through the button below.

Read the 2020 Policy Papers >

Join us as we work to uplift Memphis and uplift the nation. Make a gift of any amount to the Hooks Institute.

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Uplift Memphis, Uplift the Nation

 We can strengthen communities by aggressively tackling inequality, especially disparities related to poverty, race, health, and the economy.

Through its initiatives and partnerships with business, university, and community stakeholders, the Hooks Institute is prepared to lead the effort to make Memphis and the Mid-South, a pioneer in confronting social justice issues. The prevailing condition of people in Memphis and the Mid-South creates an urgent call for immediate action.

For the Hooks Institute, that moment is now.

Our Collective Efforts to Create A Stronger Community

With an unwavering commitment to equality for all we are prepared to Uplift Memphis, Uplift the Nation. We Invite you to share our vision for a bold and daring future!

Persistent and growing economic and racial inequalities demand a grand-scale collaboration among universities, businesses, government, community leaders, and others. No man is an island. Poverty and racism negatively impact all communities, races, and ethnic groups. We must address the weariness many among us face under the burden of inequality and injustice.