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Professor Gac-Artigas Publishes Essay: “La pandemia, el racismo y la discriminación ejercida a través del lenguaje“

Priscilla Gac-Artigas, Ph.D., professor in the Department of World Languages and Cultures, has written a reflective essay “La pandemia, el racismo y la discriminación ejercida a través del lenguaje (“The Pandemic, Racism and Discrimination Through Language” which is included in the new book, “Por un lenguaje inclusivo: Estudios y reflexiones sobre strategias no sexistas en la lengua española” (“For An Inclusive Language: Studies and Reflections on Non-Sexist Strategies in the Spanish Language”). Gac-Artigas, who is a Fulbright Scholar, and a correspondent member of the North American Academy of the Spanish Language, was also part of the double-blind peer review committee for the academic essays included in the volume. The book, a collection of 10 academic essays and 10 reflective/creative essays, was edited by Tina Escaja and Natalia Prunes and published by the North American Academy of the Spanish Language (ANLE for its acronym in Spanish), 2021.

Gac-Artigas reflects on the positive side of the confluence in time of the current health pandemic, the endemic racism, and the discrimination exercised through language affecting our society:

¿Qué vínculo puede existir entre tres males que aquejan a nuestra sociedad: la pandemia sanitaria, la endemia del racismo y la discriminación ejercida a través del lenguaje, y cómo afrontarlos para colectivamente superarlos? Que la confluencia de estos nos entrega la oportunidad históri­ca de reparar la fibra social de nuestra humanidad y como Don Quijote, salir a corregir entuertos; que nos permite erradicar tres males mayores: la injusticia económica, la social y la lin­güística de los que la pandemia, el racismo y la discriminación  son manifestaciones; y sobre todo, que nos lleva a ser mejores, a emprender un viaje al interior de nuestras conciencias, salir del yo, y rompiendo con el pasado, atrevernos a establecer un nuevo orden social y humano y a nombrarlo con la dignidad que merecemos todas, todos y todes.

“What link can we establish among the following three social ills affecting our society: the Covid-19 pandemic, the endemic racism, and the discrimination exercised through language? How to deal with them to collectively overcome them? The historic opportunity that their confluence in time provides us to repair the social fiber of our humanity so that, like Don Quixote, we go out into the world to correct mistakes. They provide us with the unique opportunity to eradicate three main plagues at once: economic, social, and linguistic injustice, clear manifestations of the pandemic, systemic racism, and language discrimination that affect our world. Above all, they push us to be better. They press us to undertake a self-conscience journey, break with the past, and dare to establish a new social and human order and name it with the dignity that we all deserve.”

The book is available to download as a PDF file on ANLE’s website.

Prof. Gac-Artigas publishes essay in new volume