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Race to the Future? Values and Vision in the Design of Technology and Society

Keynote Address by Dr. Ruha Benjamin

Dr. Ruha Benjamin quotes a Baha'i Sacred Writing at a virtual keynote: "Thou art like unto the pupil of the eye that is dark in color but is a fount of light and the revealer of the contingent world."
Dr. Ruha Benjamin during her virtual keynote address


Thursday, August 13, 2020
Science in the Curriculum Faculty Enrichment Retreat (virtual)
Science for Seminaries Project, AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion Program

The AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion (DoSER) program hosted Dr. Ruha Benjamin for a conversation on the future of technology, race, and religion. She discussed her award-winning book, Race After Technology: Abolitionist Tools for the New Jim Code, which explores the effects of machine bias and systemic racism in modern technology.
This public keynote was hosted by the Science for Seminaries project as part of the Science in the Curriculum Faculty Enrichment Retreat.

Read more about the keynote.

Learn more about the Science for Seminaries project.



The following videos are excerpts from Dr. Benjamin's keynote address.

Technology is often discussed as if it were a force separate from human influence, but it is not. 


On the consequences of a distorted vision of justice, racism, and its implications


What is the New Jim Code and what does it look like?


What needs to be done to change the design of racist technology? How can faith traditions inform culture and culture's views of technology?



Headshot of Dr. Ruha Benjamin

Dr. Ruha Benjamin is a professor of African American studies at Princeton University. Her work explores social dimensions of science, technology, and medicine. She is also the founder of the Ida B. Wells JUST DATA Lab, which brings together students, educators, activists, and artists to develop a critical and creative approach to data conception, production, and circulation. She writes and speaks widely on issues of innovation, equity, health, and justice around the world. For more information about Dr. Benjamin, visit her website.