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  • Byerly Hall 8 Garden Street Cambridge, MA, 02138 United States (map)

It has become commonplace to appeal to the notion of "lived experience" when thinking about how members of established social groups respond to the world differently. But how exactly does this phenomenon work? In other words, why is it possible for people from different socially conditioned backgrounds to perceive some objects of experience in fundamentally distinct ways? The purpose of this presentation is to offer an intuitive way for thinking about how a person's life experience can be shaped by their knowledge or ignorance of certain dominant forms of oppression—ultimately informing how they see certain things external to their consciousness.  Led by Darien Pollock, accompanied by Miguel Santiago.

Darien Pollock is a Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Philosophy at Harvard University. The core of his research centers on the development of a philosophical method that he calls "street philosophy." In addition to his work as an academic philosopher, Darien is the founder and president of the Street Philosophy Institute, Inc. (SPI), a Massachusetts-based non-profit organization dedicated to promoting research in the areas of public philosophy and civic engagement.

Miguel Santiago is a current master’s candidate at the Harvard Graduate School for Education studying Educational Policy and Management. He also currently serves as a graduate fellow for Hip Hop Ex (HHEX), an innovative learning lab that explores the relationships between hip hop and education, as well as a research assistant for the ASH Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the Kennedy School. His journey begins in Stone Mountain, GA, being raised in a household that placed music and education at the forefront of his upbringing. Upon being the first in his family to attend and graduate college, he embarked upon a career in education. He taught high school English in the Mississippi Delta for a year before transitioning back to his hometown of Atlanta to work in several Metro-Atlanta public schools to implement remediation programs that developed stronger literacy skills. He then made the transition into the world of higher education for the next 5 years, focusing on college access for first gen Black and Latinx youth across the country. He worked as an Associate Director of Diversity Recruitment for Hampshire College while also becoming the leader of a non-profit coalition of universities and colleges (NECBAC) working to create more bridges of access for underserved Black and Latinx students. At the core of Miguel’s work in secondary and higher education, Hip Hop, Blues, and the art of storytelling have always served as powerful instruments in grounding his own identity while also empowering his students to find strength and beauty within their own.
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