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Salt Lake City – October 15, 2007 – The United States is becoming increasingly diverse, and yet many discussions of race continue to be based on the assumption that issues can be seen as black and white.  Frank Wu, author of Yellow: Race in American Beyond Black and White, and co-author of Race, Rights and Reparation: Law and the Japanese American Internment will visit the University of Utah’s College of Social Work on Monday, October 22, to propose a paradigm shift for the discussion of civil rights. 

In his book, Yellow, Wu writes that “Instead of pleading with people that racial thinking is wrong, we have to struggle to show ourselves that it occurs.”  During his presentation, Wu will use personal stories, social science data, and historical examples to layout a framework intended to aid the nation in progressing toward a diverse democracy. 

Wu is the current dean of the Wayne State University Law School in Detroit.  He earned his law degree from the University of Michigan after earning his bachelor’s degree at Johns Hopkins University.  Appointed by Mayor Anthony Williams, Wu served as chair of the D.C. Human Rights Commission from 2001-2002. 

“Each year, [Wu] is invited by literally hundreds of organizations to do presentations about his work,” said Irene Ota, the diversity coordinator for the College of Social Work.  “He only accepts five engagements per year, so we are extremely fortunate to have this opportunity.”  Ota hopes that Wu’s presentation (and the interactive panel discussion to follow) will not only be informative, but will also spark dialogue within the Salt Lake community about these important issues.

Wu’s presentation, “The Future of Civil Rights,” will begin at 2:00 pm on Monday, October 22, in the University of Utah College of Social Work’s auditorium (395 South 1500 East).  The interactive panel discussion and a book signing will immediately follow Wu’s presentation and will conclude at 4:00 pm.  All members of the community are welcome and encouraged to attend this free event.  For more information, please call (801) 581-8913.

“The Future of Civil Rights” is sponsored by the University of Utah’s College of Social Work, College of Social and Behavioral Science, Professional and Community Education program, the Office of the Associate Vice President for Diversity, and by Salt Lake Community College.  Wu donates a portion of his presentation fees to charity.