The Department of History works vigorously to promote diversity. As Yale historians, we approach diversity as an affirmation of the principles of equality and justice. We understand the full spectrum of ways in which people experience, inhabit, and express their gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, ability, socioeconomic status, and religion to enrich our intellectual community, and we commit to welcoming and supporting all people. Our commitment stems from our desire to create a teaching and learning environment that encourages all of its participants—students, faculty, and staff—to feel empowered by their identities and enlightened through their interactions with one another.
Inquiry into the diversity of our world lies at the heart of history as a field of study. We come to understand the history of a culture, group, or individual by accounting for its existence in terms of other cultures, groups, or individuals different from it. As historians, our scholarly task demands that we remain open to all perspectives and experiences. It demands that we pursue investigations that recognize diverse ways of knowing and being in the world. And it demands that we commit to valorizing truth and justice, especially in instances in which dominant paradigms and institutions undermine them.
As historians, we are keenly aware that injustice and prejudicial behavior have deep roots and that these issues continue to affect people’s everyday lives, including their educational experiences. By engaging with these issues in our teaching, research, and broader social interactions, we aim to cultivate in ourselves a robust awareness of the problems created by stereotyping, bias, discrimination, exploitation, and injustice. We aspire to use the power of historical inquiry to stamp out inequity and falsehood and to honor the memory of all those who have engaged in the struggle for truth, whatever their background or identity. We hope our work and ongoing dialogue in these areas will positively impact others at Yale, in New Haven, and in the world around us.
Diversity committee members, 2016-17: