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Department of Africana Studies | Action is 36 years overdue in holding the remains of MOVE bombing victims

(04/29/21 5:12am)

As faculty and graduate group members in the Department of Africana Studies, we feel it is incumbent upon us to speak to the tragic, sorrowful, and racist treatment of the remains of two children, Delisha Africa and Tree Africa, killed in the bombing of MOVE. Although this tragic event occurred on May 13, 1985, the presence of these remains within the Penn Museum only very recently became public knowledge. We recognize that other departments on campus are working to raise awareness about systemic racism and the legacies of slavery and racial discrimination, particularly when exploring Penn’s own history. Nonetheless, the Department of Africana Studies was founded to play a special role as academic witnesses to and chroniclers of the ferocity of racism.

Editorial | Returning the remains isn't enough

(04/29/21 7:16am)

This past Monday, the Penn Museum formally apologized for possessing the remains of at least one child killed by Philadelphia police in the 1985 MOVE bombing. However, Penn Museum's apology has not been without controversy. Members of MOVE, a Black liberation advocacy group, rejected the apology as insufficient, demanding the immediate return of the remains, the firing of a key employee of Penn Museum at the center of the scandal, and financial reparations. 

AAUP-Penn | Penn must return human remains and repay the Africa family

(04/29/21 7:18am)

In the past week it has come to light that the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology has for over 35 years held, studied, and at times displayed the human remains of a child named Tree Africa, a member of West Philadelphia’s MOVE organization. The bones of 14-year-old Tree Africa, and possibly also 12-year-old Delisha Africa, were reportedly handed over by the medical examiner’s office to Penn anthropologists for forensic study in the 1980s after the May 13, 1985 killing of eleven West Philadelphia residents, when Philadelphia Police dropped an aerial bomb on the MOVE residence and let fires destroy over 60 homes in the Cobbs Creek neighborhood adjacent to our university.

Penn Leads the Vote | Finals are coming, so join your fellow Quakers and vote by mail

(04/29/21 11:28pm)

As we approach the end of an unprecedented academic year, students have much more to think about than politics. Still, it is important that students bring their enthusiasm from this fall to the present and vote on May 18, 2021 in the local Philadelphia primary election. Even though the election will occur after finals and commencement, Penn students must still make their voices heard. 

Editorial | It’s past time for affordable summer classes

(04/22/21 5:17am)

This year, as many Penn students struggle to find summer opportunities, Penn’s summer course offerings provide the chance to stay engaged and get ahead on coursework and requirements. However, at a price of $4,694 to $7,092 per course unit, depending on the school, these classes do not come cheap. Without grant-based aid during the summer terms, and limited other assistance, Penn’s courses remain inaccessible to many.

AAUP–Penn | Best practices for course stopping times under the new schedule

(04/20/21 5:10pm)

In an April 14, 2021 Daily Pennsylvanian article, Penn administrators responded to a petition signed by more than 150 faculty members “against the university’s unilateral increase in teaching time.”  Penn’s Associate Vice Provost of Education and Academic Planning Gary Purpura told The DP that the new schedule format rolling out this fall will not make any explicit changes to class stopping times. The article states, “He said, however, that since the 10 minutes are no longer necessary for travel time, an instructor who wishes to teach for an additional 10 minutes will have the freedom to do so.” As is frequently the case, it has taken faculty pressure to get Penn administrators to explain their decisions, and the American Association of University Professors at Penn is glad to enable this. 

Editorial | In light of Biden's Title IX review, Penn must do more to combat sexual assault

(04/08/21 6:49am)

Last month, President Joe Biden announced an executive order reviewing Title IX regulations and how they pertain to sexual misconduct. This review comes less than a year after the Trump administration released rules that, among other things, narrowed the definition of sexual harassment to offenses that are “severe, pervasive, and objectively offensive” as well as restricted the type of offenses universities must intervene in to those occurring on campus or “in conjunction with an education program or activity."