The Center for Social Solutions is committed to establishing concrete solutions to our four initiatives. While these issues are relevant across the entire nation and in all corners of the world, it is also useful to examine their local presence in a specific location. Doing so can help us to better grasp the fact that no community is immune to these problems, and provide clarity when assessing the larger-scale version of these issues.

Today’s focus is the Slavery and Its Aftermath initiative and its themes. To learn more about the lasting effects of slavery in Michigan, take a look at the content below.


"Detroit artist Tylonn J. Sawyer creates mural depicting first African American student to attend U-M" by Stephanie Harrell, U-M Arts & Culture

An artist and resident at U-M’s Institute for the Humanities, Tylonn J. Sawyer, plans to dedicate a mural to Samuel C. Watson, the first African American to attend the University of Michigan.


"Detroit movie event exposes a brutal chapter in history of American racism" by Julie Hinds, Detroit Free Press

Detroit residents turned their attention to slavery’s aftermath at a screening of the film “Rape of Recy Taylor,” which recounts the violence faced by African American women during the Jim Crow era and acknowledges the importance of these women in the civil rights movement.


"Saginaw’s Brenda Moore named first black female president of Michigan Municipal League" by Isis Simpson-Mersha, MLive

After 120 years of operation, the Michigan Municipal League is finally being led by a black woman. Brenda Moore, who began her career in politics with the desire to be a voice for the underrepresented members of her community, was elected in September to be the League’s 2019-2020 president. 


"Detroit pays final respects to Congressman John Conyers" by Sarah Cwiek, Michigan Radio

Congressman John Conyers passed away last month at age 90, but the turnout for his public memorial service proved that his legacy as a civil rights leader and an advocate for the city of Detroit will live on.



"Digging Detroit: Slavery in Detroit" (2016)

U-M professor Tiya Miles devoted two years to researching slavery in Detroit. Her work offers valuable details and insights about the history and aftermath of slavery in Michigan—a state not often recognized as a former home to slaves.

Watch on YouTube



"Pass the MiC Podcast: Cultural Appropriation", Michigan Daily (2019)

This episode of the Michigan Daily’s “Pass the MiC Podcast” examines the issue of cultural appropriation and its impact on those whose cultures are trivialized. Guest Zoe Allen, an Afro-American/African Studies major, leads a compelling conversation about race, history, and its contemporary implications.

Listen on the Michigan Daily or Apple Podcasts