Author Topic: Building Through Conflict: Policy Debate Video Project  (Read 371 times)


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Building Through Conflict: Policy Debate Video Project
« on: October 05, 2020, 12:10:36 PM »
Deadline for Submissions: January 1, 2021

How we advertise our community matters. Traditional representations of the benefits of policy debate competition often gloss over the conflicts over gender, race, ethnicity, ability and sexuality that has characterized the past twenty-five years of our activity. Our growth as a community has often been painful on all sides of our divides. Yet, we have watched those conflicts produce evolution in debate theory, argumentation, and practice. We have become more sophisticated interlocutors in public deliberations on difference. In our contemporary moment structural racism and state sponsored violence against Black people has risen to confront the national character of this nation. As we watch the nation attempt to grapple with racial difference, we are reminded that we have been having such conversations for decades. The country has a lot to learn from our community's experiences. This is the time to advertise and promote the opportunity that students have in choosing policy debate participation. Universities and businesses are struggling to respond to this racial moment. We should be front forward in establishing policy debate as an effective method for training students to discuss, across their differences, a timely issue that is confronting the nation. If we want our administrators to see our programs as indispensable and to encourage the development of new programs at other colleges and universities, then we have to start advertising what we do through frames they will respond to. While this is not the only video that can be made to promote policy debate to broader audiences, we should not shy away from the opportunity to promote the community in this way.
In collaboration with the debate programs at CSU Fullerton (Shanara Reid-Brinkley), University of Kentucky (Lincoln Garrett), Wake Forest University (Amber Kelsie) and Georgetown University (Mikaela Malsin), we would like the debate community to self-film videos about the importance of policy debate in training students to confront structural racism and all other forms of difference that the community has been grappling with. We invite directors, coaches, and college debaters to participate. We will list a number of questions that can serve as prompts to get you started. If you answer more than one prompt, that is fine, but leave a few moments between questions you answer on the video so that they can be separated out during video production. You are not limited to the prompts, if there is anything we have not covered here please feel free to add. Depending on the volume of submissions we may be unable to use all or parts of submissions in the promotional video we send out (that might end up terribly long). However, we hope to make unused material available in some other way.
Your submissions should be no more than 2-3 minutes. If more than one prompt interests you we will allow more than one submission. If you have multiple submissions please limit each to two minutes or less. Submissions can be uploaded and shared via google drive or uploaded to Youtube (as unlisted) and share the link. Please make sure you share to both and
Prompt Questions:
Why policy debate? Why participate?
How did the conflict over race begin in debate? History of the Louisville Project, in particular, would be great.
What kind of conflicts has the community faced as it has attempted to grapple with difference, particularly racial difference, but other forms of difference as well?
How has debate theory and argument grown through the process of conflict over difference?
How has the community responded to demands by Trans* activists in the debate space?
How have students marked by privilege been impacted by activism in debate?
Why should more colleges and universities participate in debate?
How does the current rise of Black Lives Matter help us demonstrate the importance of public deliberation on race and structural racism?
How has research and argumentation helped build student understanding across difference?
How has the community attempted to respond to the targeting of successful Black debaters by the alt right and white supremacists? Why might white supremacists want to target our community?
How have discussions of disability in debates helped shape the community’s response to disability?
Discuss indigenous debate arguments implication to policy debates focus on USFG action.
How have Natives in debate transformed the rhetorical and argumentative landscape of debate competition?
Offer examples of conflicts in debates that were resolved by speaking across difference and attempting to authentically engage with one another.
How does the discussion of race (or other forms of difference) in debate open up new avenues for research and argumentation?
Discuss student demands for academic freedom.
Why should we see the Louisville Project’s goal of increasing meaningful black participation as a success?