Chris Evans is a researcher with Civic Engagement Research Group at Mills College, a member of the Youth Participatory Politics Survey Project (YPPSP) research team, a project of the Youth & Participatory Politics Research Network and an Oakland-based artist. She conducts qualitative research for the YPPSP, and manages quantitative data collection and conducts qualitative research for CERG’s Educating for Democracy in the Digital Age project. A particular research interest is in understanding what civic learning and digital media literacy learning opportunities activate young people’s imaginations toward solutions to the civic and political issues that matter most to them. Her arts practice centers around using performance to create moments of community and includes collaborations with a wide range of visual artists, choreographers, and musicians.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
I grew up in Oakland when the Black Panthers were setting up free lunches and breakfasts for me and my classmates in Oakland public schools and carrying guns to defend themselves and their community from the Oakland police. I grew up not trusting the police. It wasn’t an active distrust, but a vague terror that the police might at any moment stop me, arrest me, beat me for no reason at all. I still carry that quiet terror with me 40 years later. Every black man in my life has had experiences of police violence similar