Harvard Journal of African American Policy

The Harvard Journal of African American Policy was created to promote, discuss and disseminate perspectives affecting communities of color. It sought to educate and empower in order to improve the quality of public policies affecting the African American community specifically and the African diaspora at-large.

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Groundbreaking D.C. Statehood Congressional Hearing


For the first time in 25 years, the U.S. House of Representatives held a hearing on D.C. statehood.[1] Though over 700,000 people live in our nation’s capital, D.C. is represented by just one non-voting delegate in the House and no one in the Senate.[2][3] On September 19, 2019, months after the Democratic Party gained control […]

Policy Matters: On the Necessity for the NYC Cultural Plan to Address Equity Among City-Funded Arts Groups


 In Fred Wilson’s Guarded View, four black headless mannequins dressed in iconic museum guard uniforms from the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Jewish Museum provoke visitors to consider the unequal power relations and stereotypes that structure our experiences of cultural institutions. First shown […]

Social Innovation and Philanthropy

A Racial Autobiography of Race in Social Science Spaces: Reflections of My Early Understandings of Race and Racism


In this personal essay, Janiece Mackey discusses how she navigated the complexities of race within the educational context. Now, having progressed from student to teacher, she promotes civic engagement and intersectional empowerment among underserved youth. Janiece’s story  serves as a precursory example of the Black student and educator experience, discussed in depth in our 2016 feature of “The Politics of […]

Gender, Race and Identity

Where Are the Brothas? How the Continued Erasure of Black Men’s Voices on the Marriage Question Perpetuates the Black Male Deficit


In 2009, Linsey Davis, a Black female correspondent for the ABC News, wrote a feature article for Nightline. She had one question: “Why are successful Black women the least likely than any other race or gender to marry?” Her story went viral, sparking a national debate. Within the year, social media, newsrooms, self-help books, Black […]

Gender, Race and Identity

The Urgent Need to Address K-12 School Segregation


Earlier this year, President Obama’s final State of the Union address discussed early childhood education, high school graduation rates, and community college access. But President Obama skirted a larger issue: poor academic preparation at the K-12 level is a root cause of a lack of people of color in higher education and in the fields […]

Education, Training and Labor

From the back of the bus to the back of the house


In the restaurant industry, the darker your skin, the more likely you are to be found in the “back of the house.” It’s a world in which your accent prevents you from getting server and bartender jobs, regardless of your qualifications. Unless, of course, you have a European accent. This is true even in California […]

Gender, Race and Identity

Black votes matter


Black, White, Republican, and Democratic voters know and care about issues affecting the Black community more than ever before. In this unique election, candidates from both parties can’t afford to ignore these issues. This election cycle is unlike any other in American history. Black people have experienced endemic police brutality since 2012. In fact, according […]


A mixtape for change


Only days before the February 1st beginning of Black History/African-Heritage/Black Future month, the internet– or should I say black Twitter, erupted in fiery chatter when it was revealed that not all black people agree on its necessity. Why dedicate an entire month to celebrating the contributions of Africans and African-Americans to the world? Rather than entertain […]

Gender, Race and Identity

This Morning at Harvard Law School We Woke Up to a Hate Crime


This morning at Harvard Law School we woke up to a hate crime. The hallways of Harvard Law School are lined with portraits of every tenured professor in the history of the university. As a first-year law student, the first time that I walked down those hallways I was painfully aware of the white men […]

Fairness and Justice

A Relative Discovery: Why the Harvard Kennedy School Must Celebrate Indigenous Peoples’ Day


In telling your friends you’ve “discovered” a new restaurant, you imply to have found something you like; something your social circle is not yet “hip” to; something that should be on everyone’s radar but – because of your keen Googling skills or happenstance stroll down Massachusetts Avenue — has in it just a few more […]

Gender, Race and Identity

Our Account: A Ferguson Photo Journal


“I write to record what others erase when I speak, to rewrite the stories others have miswritten about me, about you.” — Gloria Anzaldúa Photo by Mary Glen Fredrick 8/12/2014 Every time someone at school asks me about my city and its “chaos,” I ask them about their line of thinking: “What’s so chaotic about […]

Fairness and Justice

Learning from Ferguson: Using Body Cameras and Participatory Governance to Improve Policing


Abstract The shooting and killing of Mike Brown by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, drew national attention to issues of discrimination, police brutality, and the growing divide between communities and their local law enforcement agencies. Compounding this with the grand jury’s decision not to indict the officer responsible, the need for police reform became […]

Fairness and Justice

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