Photographing Diversity
Print Friendly and PDF

A post on Discriminations ["Diversity,"Visible And Invisible] points to the minutes of a University Council Planning meeting at UNC Asheville[PDF]

UNC Asheville will have reached diversity when: Classes will include substantial variety in the participants' religion, ideas, political convictions, gender, ability, gender preference, socio-economic status, race, and ethnicity, even if these differences are not visible or otherwise evident. .... Photographs taken on campus on any given day will reflect a variety of visible diversity.

John Rosenberg asks:

So, diversity will have been achieved when the characteristics and components that it comprises “are not visible or otherwise evident.” I rather like that.

But wait. Once this nirvana-like disembodied diversity has been achieved, how can it be reflected in campus photographs? Perhaps the university’s “Diversity Assessment project” and the new “Diversity Action Council” called for by Chancellor Ponder can ponder this dilemma and come up with some additional proposals.

Well, the claim that they want different religions, ideas, and political convictions will last only as long as those religions, ideas, and political convictions don't offend against what passes for Received Truth on campus. But what they want the photographs to show, of course, is different colored students. Here's the solution the University Of Wisconsin used for its "Diversity Dilemma" in 2000—Photoshop! This is a 1993 picture of some students rooting for the Badgers: The original photo shows Badger football fans cheering during a football game at Camp Randall Stadium. This is the cover of the cover of Wisconsin's 2001-2002 admissions application: In an effort to show what a diverse campus UW-Madison is, UW officials doctored a photo that appears on the cover of the Wisconsin 2001- And this is the student who was Photoshopped in: Diallo Shabazz. This photo of Diallo Shabazz was added to the cover of the admissions application. It says here that Shabazz was "originally with ethnic minority students meeting each other at the PLAYFAIR icebreaker activity for new students..." (Emphasis added.)[JS Online: UW-Madison doctors photo to stress diversity, By Sharif Durhams, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Sept. 20, 2000] This is not surprising, since he's a third-generation black activist—his grandfather worked for Marcus Garvey. (See his bio here.)

Print Friendly and PDF