About the Project

A Hope For Reconciliation (Short Version)


In January 2011, two Hope College students created and posted fliers around Kollen Hall, promoting rush events for a fake fraternity, Kappa Kappa Kappa. The acronym and fictitious rush events parodied the Klu Klux Klan. The poster in Kollen Hall referenced cross burnings, the confederacy, and white sheets, all of which are threatening and historically significant symbols of the KKK. The poster was not only viewed as an attack on campus Greek Life, but also highlighted significant weaknesses in the college community. There were a variety of responses to the event ranging from anger to disbelief to indifference, but many called for reconciliation and a way forward. The poster prompted a campus-wide discussion about how a faith-based college community can foster a more inclusive atmosphere. 


This project began as a class assignment to create short films documenting the reaction of students to the poster and in February 2011, under the guidance of Professors Ernest Cole and William Pannapacker.  Today, some of the initial footage has been compiled with additional footage, in order to produce a 30 minute film, comprised of 14 interviews with students, faculty, and staff.  All of the video interviews were filmed with a Flip video camera, and the film was produced with iMovie.  Additionally, four learning modules, which are specific to the academic disciplines of history, psychology, religion, and English, were produced for this webpage.  Each module contains additional interview footage, resources, and discussion questions that are relevant to the respective discipline.  Although the modules are divided by discipline, the material can be used within a variety of disciplinary contexts.  


Learning Modules: 

  1.  History, in order to understand how ethnic diversity and multiculturalism have been part of the development of Hope College.
  2.  Psychology, to further understand the response to the poster incident, as well as to understand the efforts to diversify a community.
  3.  Religion, to explore the role of healing, forgiveness and reconciliation in developing community trust in Hope’s Christian environment.
  4.  English, in the construction of a narrative in which to tell the story to a wide audience.


The purpose of this project is to enter into the ongoing dialogue that is happening on campus about how to become a more inclusive college community, especially for racial and ethnic minorities.  The film and the resources on this webpage are a means for enhancing learning by raising awareness and continuing positive discussion among students, faculty, and others.

 

The full-length documentary is housed on this website in two parts, and is accessible here.

For contact information, click here.