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SHEPHERDSTOWN — The Stubblefield Institute announced a partnership with the West Virginia Humanities Council on a national initiative titled United We Stand: Connecting Through Culture. Programming for this initiative focuses on leveraging the arts and humanities to combat hate-based violence and is a joint project of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Nationally, United We Stand is awarding $2.8 million dollars to support organizations helping their communities address the dangers of hate-fueled violence.

State humanities councils were invited in February 2023 to apply for up to $50,000 of funding each for programs designed to address issues of hate through productive strategies such as education and public engagement.

The West Virginia Humanities Council will contribute $40,000 in United We Stand funding in support of this year’s conversation series. Each discussion will look at the societal problem of identity-based hatred and hate-based violence from a different angle. As is usual with the Stubblefield Institute’s programs, multiple perspectives will be presented.

“We’re delighted to partner with the Stubblefield Institute in support of this series,” said Eric Waggoner, executive director of the West Virginia Humanities Council. “We believe the humanities are absolutely vital to our nation’s civic health, civil discourse, and capacity to work together to improve social conditions. That added value begins in mutual respect, and in the recognition of our shared humanity.”

The series will begin with a community conversation and panel discussion titled “Policing of hate crimes and hate speech,” which will be held on Nov. 15 at 5:30 p.m. in the Storer Ballroom at Shepherd University. Later topics will include online regulation of hate speech and a forum about identity-based bullying.

Source: The Journal